I used to get overwhelmed with finding a system to track late essays from students. Who had an extension? Who used their late?
After years of struggling to find a system that worked, I created my Late Essay Form. As per my late policy, I give students one late pass per semester to use. This pass gives them two additional days to complete their essay. In the meantime, they must turn in the completed form as a placeholder. This system helps me keep track of who owes what and whose parents I need to contact.
Because everyone has different essay late policies, this is a word document, so you can adjust the wording to reflect your policies.