Dance student fails online course due to pet interference

(Courtesy of Sydney Ewert)

DISCLAIMER: Stories and images published in this week’s issue under satire (with the exception of advertisements) are purely satirical and created purely for entertainment and/or parody purposes. They are not intended to communicate any accurate or factual information. Some names used in Excalibur’s satire stories are fictional, and any resemblance to actual persons or entities may be purely coincidental.


Dance major, George Nicholas, failed his online modern dance course because his large Newfoundland dog, Dell (pictured above), would pass in front of the camera, blocking the view of the dancer. Nicholas remained unseen during a significant section of the dance practice, causing him to promptly fail the class.

Due to the pandemic and online classes, we are all attending and teaching classes from our own homes. Many of us have the pleasure to enjoy the company of our furry friends as we work towards our degrees. In Nicholas’ case, his dog might have cost him the future of his academic career.

“It is crucial that I see the dance students at every moment during our classes,” explains Margaret Williams, a modern dance professor. “Unfortunately, the student’s dog passed in front of their camera at an unfortunate and important moment.”

Nicholas’ dog, who is exceptionally large, passes in front of the camera occasionally to view the birds that flock outside a nearby window. Unfortunately for Nicholas, the birds decided to flock at the wrong time. 

“While I wish I could rebut this unfortunate happening, I completely understand the reason I failed this course. It was completely my fault and I should have recognized that this could happen and went out of my way to ensure that the window would remain bird-less for the remainder of my class,” says Nicholas.

During enrolment, specifications are stated for online courses, including dance courses. It is clear that students are required to attend classes in a space free of pets to avoid situations when students could be unseen. Williams is also allergic to pets, making the requirement even more significant.

Nicholas is required to retake this course for a fifth year, delaying his graduation. “I think that since I am required to study one course for an entire year, I might spend a few more thousand and take some other courses. Considering that I am already thousands in debt, it won’t make a difference if I drop another few thousand” says Nicholas, diligently planning for the future.

Eliza Cork, a fellow classmate, expresses her feelings on the situation. “We were all aware of the regulations of online dance courses. I had actually purchased cages for my pets to remain for the few hours I am dancing in the morning,” says Cork. “I wish Nicholas had done the same.”

“Moving forward, may this be a lesson for all dance majors to diligently review requirements for online dance courses,” Williams says. She further suggests that while cages are a good option, as Cork had opted to do, students also have the option of renting a second apartment solely for their dance training. 

“I highly suggest incoming students to search for a second space dedicated to their dance training. It demonstrates professionalism when a student pays rent for a second space during a pandemic to attend virtual dance classes,” explains Williams. “I am looking for dedication amongst my students and those who have actively followed the regulations.”

About the Author

By Sydney Ewert

Former Editor

Sydney is in her second year at York University studying dance. She loves to travel and explore new places. She also has a part-time job that she loves! When Sydney is not editing, working, or studying for her classes, she is likely going for walks or learning new recipes.

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