I am bragging here, but on my mother (a teacher). It was senior skip day and of course, I skipped with my friends (we were actually productive and went to a nearby university.) ANYWAY, the next day we all had to get absent slips stating that we had an unexcused absence — meaning we could not make up the work we missed. We had to have a note from our parents regarding the absence. My mother wrote a note stating that she knew I was absent (no excuses or anything, just stating the obvious so I could receive my slip). I stood in front of the Vice Principal who took my note and said, “You realize this is an unexcused absence”.
VP: You realize you will not be able to make up any of the work you missed.
Then he just continued to stare at me. I stood there for a few seconds then said, “Can I please just get my slip so I can go back to class?” He signed the slip and I went back to class.
Later my mom told me that the VP had talked to her and told her how impressed he was by my response. He was waiting to hear an excuse from me as to why I was absent, or why I should be able to make up my work (which is why he was staring silently at me), but that I owned up to what I did, accepted the consequences and moved on. That was HUGE to hear that and has stuck with me. Let them fail, make them own it. They will be better people.