bunk v2 [Cf OED2 bunk v.2 1 “To be off”; 1877→; do a bunk (at bunk n.3) “to make an escape; to depart hurriedly”; c1870→. Outside of N Amer the application to skipping school is widespread; it appears in current Brit and NZ Engl, and appears to be particularly freq in the Englishes of India and South Africa.] chiefly RI
To play hooky; to skip (school).
1924 Jrl. Amer. Inst. Criminal Law & Criminology 15.1.133 RI, When you went to school, did you bunk? I bunked quite often. . . Did you get in with any bad boys? When I bunked school. 1929 Sandusky Reg. (OH) 25 Jan 10/8, It was stated by Officer Bravard that the lad had “bunked” school Thursday. 1954 Newport Daily News (RI) 3 Nov 14/7, Why is it that up-staters refer to the practice as “bunking” school? . . [T]he term as we remember it was “skipping” school or playing “hookey.” Within the small confines of Rhode Island, why should there be this difference in language? 1969 DARE (Qu. JJ6, To stay away from school without an excuse) Infs RI4, 6, Bunkin’. 1982 Chaika Speaking RI , Bunk = skip school. 1991 Fricke–Fricke Sudden Strangers 69 RI, Once, when I was in fifth grade, he found out I had “bunked” (a peculiar Rhode Island expression for skipping school). 1991 Hutchinson News (KS) 11 Oct /2 (newspaperarchive.com) RI, If he learns as a child . . that only sissies read books and that bunking school is cool, how is he going to learn anything different? 2015 in 2016 DARE File—Internet RI, She bunked school for the day, as she often did, and claimed to have overdosed on over-the-counter medication.