Emma Couch '23
Being in the Upper School at Hutchison comes with a great deal of responsibility, trust, as well as developing a sense of personal honor. The Hutchison honor code states that “honor is the personal quality that leads us to esteem what is right, just, and true.” With this community filled with trust Hutchison students are able to learn and grow in a safe environment. When girls enter the Upper School, there is a notable shift in the expectations teachers have for their students. Girls are expected to hold themselves accountable for their own work, which in turn will prepare Hutchison students for the responsibilities that come later in life. The Honor Council at Hutchison assures girls are completing their work with academic integrity, while also reminding students of the honor code at Hutchison. A portion of the honor code states “At Hutchison, the Honor Code rests on the moral maturity, self-respect, and cooperation of each girl.” The honor code at Hutchison provides a sense of uniqueness, meaning girls at Hutchison are always trusted to do the right thing, and no one is waiting for their failure. However, everyone is human and makes mistakes. The honor council is there to help students reflect on their mistakes and learn from them.
Honor Week at Hutchison serves as a time to reflect and refresh students’ minds on what it means to follow the honor code. Chloe Brown, class of 2023, believes “the honor code is important so students can learn the differences between right and wrong at a young age, and use these skills in college as well as later in life.” While the honor council may come off as intimidating, the intention of honor week is to educate students on honor code violations they may not even be aware of. Katy Nair, the upper school assistant head, believes that if a student is ever questioning whether or not something is an honor code violation they should simply “read the honor code.” It can be easy at times to get caught up in school work and take shortcuts, honor week is a reminder that those shortcuts are never worth it in the end. Katy Nair thinks that students’ takeaways from honor week should be “an awareness of the honor council, and a commitment to the honor code.” The Hutchison honor council is also special in the sense that it is mostly student- run. The student body elected these representatives, rather than it being completely run by teachers and faculty. This provides a sense of relatability between honor council members and the rest of the student body. Katy Nair believes there are many benefits to a student run honor council, because “faculty and teachers do not attend the classes and council members can help provide an understanding to the situation more closely than if it were an all teacher and faculty run.”
During honor week honor, council members will give presentations that pertain to the honor code, and how to live with integrity not only at school but beyond our years at Hutchison. Students can practice the skill of academic honesty not only in a classroom setting, but in real world situations where your honest self produced work is expected. All Upper School students will have the opportunity to wear their honor council t- shirts as a way to celebrate the week. The honor code at Hutchison allows students to grow, be trusting, and learn crucial life skills. The last sentence of the Hutchison honor code states, “This is the Hutchison Honor Code; its strength depends on the personal honor of every Hutchison girl.” It is the honorable community at Hutchison which creates such a special learning environment.