Digging a Ditch


Photo by: Casey Jacobsen, Editor-in-Chief

Tabitha Barrett sits alone in her period 3 English Class with Ms. D’Andrea on Friday, November 1.

Ditch day, a notorious “holiday” among seniors.

After many years of work seniors feel entitled to take a day off whenever they feel.

According to the school and government they are not entitled to this privilege. The Ventura County District Attorney allows three truancies before a legal punishment. After the three truancies students are deemed a habitual truant (a legal infraction). The punishment for this infraction can be any or all of the following: a $100 fine or 20 hours of community service, denial or revocation of a work permit, or a suspended California Driver’s License for a year.

The plan for the November 1 ditch day apparently began to spread by word of mouth, on October 28, and by the end of that day most seniors were preparing to be otherwise indisposed.

But, many of the AP students didn’t ditch due to the fear of a pop quiz that may effect their grade. Tyler Duffy, senior, said, “I couldn’t miss my AP classes  I’ve got tests scheduled for Monday.”

The football players had it easy, they only needed to go to their first two class. C.I.F. regulations state that they only need to go to two classes to participate in league play and a number of them seem to have taken this way out.

The Stinger was also planning to publish a story about the championship water polo game in which Cam High beat Rio Mesa taking the title for the first time in the school’s history. But, so many students ditched that we weren’t able to get the required quotes to publish it. We will run the story next week.

The Stinger doesn’t agree with this ditch day. It was a solution for students to be able to get away with partying all night, to take a ‘mental health’ day, or to have the day to work on college applications. Also, just because other schools allowed a student release day, it does not follow that students at Cam High get to choose their own.

Tradition has it that the day before prom is senior ditch day, and teachers wink at that.

Friday, November 1, 2013, is our ditch day. If we take another, teachers may not be as forgiving with their grading, nor will they be lenient about how they will work around the absence of students. So the senior class has to be wary about their future decisions involving ditch days.

Mr. Shawn Near, Social Science teacher, is disappointed that seniors took a ditch day so early into the school year. “I know seniors tend to feel that they deserve the tradition of a ditch day, but mostly, they seem to take it toward the end of the year in May or June. And since seniors decided to take it so early, teachers are probably going to be a lot less forgiving come the end of the year.”

Near has a point. As seniors, we are eight months from graduation. With an economy in stagnation, fewer job opportunities, college expenses and other obligations, perhaps now is not the time to forgo our responsibilities. Instead, perhaps now is our time to prove ourselves.


Editorials are the opinion of the Stinger and the Writing for Publication class as a whole. These pieces are penned by selected editors, but not without input from the entire class. Please reply with your comments in the comments section or send an e-mail to us directly at [email protected]