Students’ Concerns Arise After Senior Assembly

Drew Gray '23, Co Editor

Seniors walked into the auditorium on Monday morning expecting, based on an email from Principal Callaghan, a brief assembly “to go over a few ways students can have the best possible learning experience at WHS.”

Students had already received multiple emails at the beginning of the year reminding them of the dress code and phone policies at WHS. During this assembly, Principal Callaghan brought up a number of these topics among others.

The most notable of these topics was the dress code. Mr. Callaghan specifically referenced what is not allowed for both boys and girls. He stated that boys could not show any chest, and that girls could not wear tank tops that show skin or “cleavage” because they are a “distraction” to the learning environment.

Following the principal’s remarks, one student spoke up about this issue stating that while girls were the target for this discussion, there are more than just a few articles of clothing that are contributing to this problem. After these comments, Principal Callaghan started clapping and began to shift the focus of the discussion. It should be noted that Mr. Callaghan spoke at the remaining grade-wide assemblies; however, he did not bring up this topic and language to the same extent.

After the assembly, senior Ella Silverberg was asked to change by Mr. Callaghan because of what she was wearing.

When asked about what took place she explained, “As I was leaving the assembly I was dress coded and asked to change [by Mr. Callaghan]. Fashion is extremely important to me and I refused to change because my outfit wasn’t distracting. I plan to go into the fashion industry and this is my way of expressing myself, so for this ability to be taken away from me is not fair.”

Another noteworthy topic mentioned during the assembly was “do-good” cards. As assistant principals Mrs. Barrett and Ms. Mercandante explained, these cards would be given out to students who are actively doing good in the WHS community.

Senior Owen Tarasiak stated, “You shouldn’t have to receive cards for being nice from teachers or administrators; you should already be doing it in the first place.”

Teachers and administrators will be on the lookout for students doing good acts. Mrs. Barrett added that these cards could be redeemed for rewards in the front office.

Senior Sydney Allen also commented on the cards stating, “In the real world, you don’t get a cookie for doing something good, so why should we be receiving them now if we are preparing ourselves for it?”

Administration noted that if any student had an individual question on the topics discussed at the assembly, they could speak to Mr. Callaghan, Mrs. Barrett, or Ms. Mercandante individually.