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Religious Observances Policy

Scope

Faculty, staff, and students

Policy Statement

Syracuse University recognizes the diverse faith traditions represented among its campus community and supports the rights of faculty, staff, and students to observe according to these traditions.

All University offices are asked to be sensitive to the needs of faculty, staff, and students who are observing a religious holiday when scheduling meetings and events.

Deans, department chairs, and program directors are asked to make every effort to avoid scheduling meetings or events at times that would exclude faculty who are observing a religious holiday from participation.

Supervisors are asked to be supportive of staff members who request vacation or personal time to observe a religious holiday and to make every effort to avoid scheduling meetings or events at times that would exclude such staff members from participation.

Students are asked to consider that it is more difficult to arrange appropriate accommodations in some kinds of courses - for example, those that have certain kinds of laboratories or a significant experiential learning component - so students should consider their need for accommodation for religious observances as they plan their schedule each semester. Students should recall that not every course is offered every academic year and that the catalog indicates how frequently each course is offered.

Faculty are asked to make appropriate accommodation for students' observance needs by providing an opportunity to make up any examination, study, or work requirement that is missed because of an absence due to a religious observance, provided the instructor has been notified no later than the end of the second week of classes for regular session classes and by the submission deadline for flexibly formatted classes. No fees will be charged to the student for the costs incurred by the University for such make-up work. If a faculty member is unwilling or unable to make an appropriate accommodation, the student should consult his or her academic dean.

Syracuse University recognizes that the faith traditions observed by our diverse community include more holidays than can be captured adequately in a list. In addition, some observances vary by tradition and by country and are defined by the lunar calendar. However, to assist in identifying religious observance days, Hendricks Chapel has compiled a list of religious holidays that reflect a large proportion of the University community and that may or may not fall on University work and class days. The chapel also recommends consulting the more comprehensive Interfaith Calendar.

Policy Administration

Date: January 2010
Amended: February 2011


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