I teach a course where attendance is required. The syllabus says "Every unexcused absence will result in a deduction of one point from the attendance grade". The total number of points for attendance is 3. Thus if a student has perfect attendance, they will receive 3/3 for the attendance grade, if a student has two unexcused absences, their attendance grade will be 1/3, etc. The school rule also implied that any student who has four or more unexcused absences should drop this course. So when the syllabus policy was made, the case where a student has four or more absences was not considered.
There is a student who has 6 unexcused absences. By right he should drop this course but for whatever reason he has persuaded the dean to allow him to remain in this course. In this case, should I give him -3/3 for his attendance grade based on the syllabus policy "Every unexcused absence will result in a deduction of one point". Or should I give him 0/3? I think this student deserves a lower attendance grade than someone with three unexcused absences, who will receive 0/3.
Canvas allows me to technically enter a negative grade, but I am not sure if it will be a good idea. What are some possible consequences of entering a negative grade?
- There are 100 total points in the class, so an otherwise-perfect student with a 0/3 on attendance would receive 97% (and -3/3 would be 94%).
- The student has a remarkably good attitude despite the absences (this may have affected the dean's thinking).