Head of Upper School Laura Ross declares final exams optional

Frank Jiang

In an email sent out to the junior and sophomore classes June 1, Head of Upper School Laura Ross announced that final exams administered this week will be optional. Students will have the option to postpone their finals if they feel that they are struggling to focus in the midst of nationwide protests against racial inequality and police brutality. Additionally, Ross said that all finals can only positively impact students’ grades.

Rather than standing idly by, Ross said that she feels the school should actively respond to these acts of violence.

“As many of our Black students who reached out to me this weekend mentioned, to have to turn on the news, or scroll through social media feeds, and watch people who look like them, or their family members and friends, be the targets of unspeakable violence and dehumanization, is extraordinarily painful,” Ross said. “What’s also painful is to feel that their peers, and their school, don’t see what’s happening in our country as important enough to make us do anything different than ‘business as usual.’”

If students do not wish to take a final or prefer to postpone the exam to a later date, they can do so by emailing their teachers directly and copying their deans.