The American rapper Mac Miller recites, “Supposed to be in class, but I ain’t going. Let’s chill on the couch, see what’s on the telly,” in his song “Senior Skip Day.”
For many RBHS seniors, those words become true tomorrow, April 19, when they participate in what they call Senior Skip Day.. This is conveniently the same day that all juniors will take the ACT, which clears the school of an entire grade of possible distraction.
Senior Skip Day is a long-standing tradition. Teacher David Graham, who graduated RBHS in 1986, never participated in senior skip day himself, but he recalls the customs of his own class.
“Senior Skip Day occurred on the 86th day of the school year, then of the calendar year,” Graham said. “We were class of ’86, so what you would do is say, ’86 days in, we’re going to have a senior skip day’.”
Graham said when he was a senior if school started Aug. 12, they would count 86 days into school, and on that 86th day, class members would have a skip day. Then when the calendar year started again on Jan. 1, they would count 86 more days and have another skip day. That day usually landed in April, similar to the date in recent times. Activities on Senior Skip Day usually involved staying around Columbia and having fun with friends outside of school.
“Generally speaking, people would go to Bethel Park or to the strip pits up north and hang out,” Graham said. “I’m sure plenty of people did things they weren’t supposed to do.”
Administrators denied any knowledge of a Senior Skip Day and said they have no specific policy regarding a day where a fourth of the school doesn’t show up.
“We don’t know anything here about senior skip days,” assistant principal Dr. Darlene Grant said. “There is no such thing as a skip day. I am not aware of an official holiday called senior skip day. We don’t automatically excuse students because they are students and they suddenly all decided to not come to school all together.”
Despite administration not recognizing Senior Skip Day, seniors have been preparing their plans for weeks and are looking forward to the excitement the day brings. Senior Abby Blitz plans on going to the St. Louis with friends to visit the zoo and shop for graduation dresses during her day off. She said to do this she will have to take the absence as unexcused.
“My mom won’t call me out. She wants me to face the consequences of my actions but it’s worth it,” Blitz said. “It’s a tradition. I’m trying to get the whole senior year experience. Plus being in class with nobody else would kind of suck and I wouldn’t be doing anything that day anyways.”
Are you a senior? Did you skip?