Policies and Procedures

Updated Spring 2015

Absence Policy: If you have to miss class, call or e-mail me BEFORE OR BY THE START OF CLASS if possible. I will send you handouts, the lesson plan, and notes via e-mail and answer your questions.  If you do have to miss, try to make arrangements to get a copy of the class notes from a fellow student. I will have a personal conference with parents of students who miss 25% of the classes to discuss continued enrollment. Students who miss more than 25% of the classes may be automatically withdrawn from the course (see withdrawal policy). If I have to miss class, I will schedule a make-up class if possible.

Weather Policy: If we are under a winter weather warning, tornado warning, or severe thunderstorm warning at the time of class for the meeting location, class will be cancelled. I will try to call and email everyone to confirm. Never put yourself in danger to get to writing class. If it is snowing or icing, stay home.  If Keller school district, Birdville school district, or the Azle School district is closed or delayed, our class will be cancelled. We will make up class according to the date listed on the schedule of assignments.  If our location is clear, but it is snowing in Dallas, we will have class.  If we are under an advisory or a watch, class will probably still happen.

Phone Policy: Cell phone use is restricted to emergencies only. If a student uses a phone in class for any other reason without my prior permission, I will confiscate the phone for the class period and notify the parent. If it happens again, I will have a conference with the parent to discuss the student’s continuation in the class.

Withdrawal Policy: Because things can happen to change families’ schedules and prevent further attendance, I offer the following withdrawal policy. If a student has to withdraw by the middle of the semester (6th class in a 12-week semester or 7th class in a 14-week semester), 1/2 of the semester’s paid full tuition will be refunded. If the student withdraws after the halfway point, the tuition refund will be based on 50% of the remaining days of class if tuition has already been paid in full. For example, if the tuition works out to $10/class and someone withdraws with 4 classes remaining, the refund on fully paid tuition will be $20. If the full tuition hasn’t already been paid, no further refund will be given, and tuition up to the point of withdrawal must be paid.

Deposit Policy: I usually require a deposit to hold a student’s place in class. It is part of the total tuition cost and not an additional fee. It is refundable until two weeks prior to the start of class.

Payment Policy: I ask that tuition be paid in full by 25% of the semester. In case of 12-week classes that means by the 3rd week. I do accept postdated checks. If due to hardship or payday schedules you wish to make specific arrangements, please contact me. I am usually able to work out a schedule to meet both our needs.

Plagiarism Policy: For the purposes of YourWritingTeacher, plagiarism is defined as using another writer’s words as your own. Period! Students are not to do research for their papers unless the assignment specifically calls for it.  All research assignments will include instruction in proper documentation. Any student who includes wording from a source without giving proper documentation will receive a grade of zero on the assignment. In severe cases, YourWritingTeacher reserves the right to withdraw any student found guilty of plagiarizing without refunding any portion of tuition paid. Any student withdrawn for plagiarism will receive NO GRADE for the class.

Homework Policy: Students are expected to have completed the assigned work before class begins. If it appears that students are not completing the readings assigned as homework, I will assign extra journal writing for homework and give pop quizzes in class to encourage students to do the work. I will schedule a conference with the parents of students who seem not to prepare for class on a regular basis.

Late Work Policy: I give grace on one late essay. After that, late essays lose 10 points from their grade. The only excused late work is for parent-verified illness or other hardship. The completed essay must be presented on the date arranged by and agreed to by Your Writing Teacher. Otherwise, it will be counted as a zero. Students are encouraged to send essays early via email in case of scheduled absences, such as family trips or sports conflicts. Students may send late papers via email as soon as they are ready; they do not have to wait until the next class meeting.

Late Exam Policy: Take-home Exams that come in late without a parent-verified excuse will lose 15 points from their total grade. The completed exam must be turned in at the next available class meeting in order to receive a grade. In case of scheduled absences, such as family trips or sports conflicts, the exam should be completed ahead of time and mailed to Donna Samudio. Failure to turn in a take-home exam according to this policy results in a grade of zero for the exam.

Your Guide To Powerful Writing for Teens and Adults