Responding to a plea from physicians who were swamped with requests for sick-leave notes, the University of Ottawa will allow students to miss up to 15 days of classes without producing a doctor's notes.
This change in policy was announced Friday, and would include needing no sick-leave note when missing exams.
Only one per cent of students are reporting flu-like illness, according to Michael Histed, risk manager at the U of O.
Histed said the change was made to respect a request from the public health department to reduce pressure on doctors, and he isn't worried about students abusing the policy.
"A lot of our reporting systems are based on the honour system, but we feel it's going to be a very small minority that's going to try to abuse that system," he said.
Carleton should follow lead: student
Carleton University still requires notes for absenteeism or missing exams.
Garima Talwar, a fourth-year student at Carleton who represents those living in residence, said Carleton is doing well to support students who are ill.
But, she said, the school should follow the University of Ottawa's lead.
"It will ease the tensions of having to balance the school stress load as well as the stresses of being sick," she said.
Still Carleton says the number of sick students on campus is no greater than a normal year.
It has asked professors to be lenient with those who are ill.
However, it has no plans to do away with doctors' notes unless the number of sick student increases dramatically.