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For students affected by Hurricane Beryl or other natural disasters, please reach out to your advisor for any needed support. Note that power outages due to extreme weather falls within our excused absence policy. Students can also access additional support through
Relay's Student Assistance Program.
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General Leave of Absence
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Students who are actively enrolled (i.e., have started attending classes) and determine that it is not possible or in their best interest to complete the coursework in which they are currently registered can request to take a leave of absence from the program. This includes students who are taking a leave of absence due to compelling personal circumstances. To initiate a leave of absence, students should first discuss their intentions with their school leader and their advisor to determine how and when to take a leave of absence and discuss a plan to return. Students may reach out to [email protected] for additional information. Students who wish to remain enrolled and are struggling should reach out to their advisor for possible alternatives/supports before requesting a leave of absence. Students are still enrolled students at Relay, with corresponding academic, financial, and administrative responsibilities, until the leave of absence is processed and they receive email verification of the leave of absence.

 

Students select the effective date for their leave of absence to go into effect as either “today’s date” or “the end of the term” when submitting the leave of absence form. Requests that include an effective date after the term census date and before the end of the term will not earn grades and/or credit for courses taken that term. In this case, students’ transcripts will demonstrate a “W” in lieu of a course grade. Students’ general leave of absence or leave of absence due to compelling circumstances requests that include an effective date on or after the last date of the term will earn the grades for the term they just completed.

 

Students at risk of administrative withdrawal due to financial obligations may not request a general leave of absence between terms. However, students may request a general leave of absence up until the last day of the current term. Any requests submitted after the end of term, but prior to the start of the subsequent term, will be reviewed for a Registration Hold due to an outstanding balance. If a student has a Registration Hold due to financial obligations that results in an administrative withdrawal, the requested leave of absence will be superseded by the administrative withdrawal.

 

A leave of absence is valid for up to one year (three consecutive terms). Please refer to the Reenrolling or Transferring Programs policy for details on when to apply to return from a leave of absence. Relay will withdraw students who have taken a leave of absence from the program if they do not return within one year (i.e., three terms). For students enrolled in an educator preparation program, a leave of absence and/or withdrawal may result in immediate suspension or revocation of a teaching certificate/license in most states. A leave of absence while completing qualifying clinical experience will delay the timeline to program completion and certification/licensure. Additional details can be found in the appropriate EPP Handbook, and students may sign up for office hours here

 

Please note: Students may not be exempt from student loan repayments under this policy. Relay encourages students to contact their loan providers to understand the implications associated with taking a leave. Additionally, students should note that a leave of absence will be treated as a withdrawal for the purposes of Title IV federal financial aid. This may require students who have taken a leave of absence to return a portion of unearned federal loans or grants. For more information about the return of Title IV funds, please see Return of Federal Financial Aid (Title IV).

 

Leave of Absence if Enrolled in AmeriCorps

If you’re enrolled in Relay’s AmeriCorps program, taking a leave of absence will impact your membership status. Students may be temporarily suspended from the AmeriCorps program if they plan to return to Relay that same academic year. However, students must be early exited entirely from the AmeriCorps program if they will not return that same academic year. If supporting documentation is provided and a compelling personal circumstances leave is approved, students will be able to earn a portion of their Segal AmeriCorps Education Award (if eligible) upon early exit. Students should mention their AmeriCorps membership when connecting with their advisor and reach out to [email protected] with any AmeriCorps-specific questions.  

 

Procedure for Leave of Absence

To initiate a request for a leave of absence, students should first talk with their advisor to determine if a leave is the right next step for them. The advisor will work with the student to determine how and when to take the leave of absence. Students must discuss the implications of a leave of absence with their school leaders, applicable sponsoring or partnering organization (such as Teach For America or New York City Teaching Fellows), and Student Financial Services. There may be significant professional, academic, financial, and when appropriate, certification/licensure-related consequences to suspending enrollment in a Relay program. For details, see Financial Obligations Upon Changes to Enrollment.

 

Once students have confirmed that a leave of absence is the right decision, they must formally submit a leave of absence application to Relay. The effective date will be either the date the student submitted the leave of absence application or the end of the term, depending on what the student indicates on their application. Relay will notify students via email upon approval of their leaves of absence and inform the students of leave and reenrollment procedures. Student Financial Services will follow up with students about how to pay any outstanding Relay tuition and fees, including any tuition balances from pending unearned awards that must be immediately paid back due to the leave and prior to reenrollment. Please see Billing Due Dates and Refunds for more information. Students who return from leaves of absence may also have to pay for coursework they are required to repeat.

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