Annual assembly brings community together around our shared pledge
At the beginning of each school year, Bullis staff and students gather to review the Honor Code and reaffirm our shared commitment to it. The preamble to the code—found in the Student Handbook and reviewed in each advisory—reflects a value in integrity, courtesy, trust and creativity and states that pride in our diverse community is built upon sound attitude, judgments and behaviors. It calls for all members of the community (students, faculty and staff) to conduct ourselves in the trust spirit of caring and community every day.
The code says:
"I will embrace truth and honesty in word and deed.
I will respect the rights, backgrounds and views of others.
I will be accountable for my actions at all times."
The Honor Code assembly this year was led by student government co-presidents Jonathan Hsu and Sydney Smith from the Class of 2017. They introduced the speakers and each of the signers representing each class.
A student speaker from each division spoke about the meaning of the Honor Code. Lower Schooler Benjamin Brazier from the 5th grade shared what the honor code meant to him: respect, honesty, safety and pride.
Middle Schooler Calla O'Neil from the 8th grade spoke about the importance of trust and integrity. "It's not about getting an A on the exam or winning the game. It's about how we get there. How we treat each other, how we prepare, how we learn, and how we compete." She noted how important an honor code is, especially in difficult times, and how "maybe here at Bullis we can set a small, but important example of a community that is committed to the core values of integrity, courtesy, trust and creativity." She concluded by proudly stating: "Today it starts with me, and all of us, as individuals. What kind of community do we want to live and grow in here at Bullis? ...I am all in for acting with the highest integrity, courtesy and trust. I hope you decide to join me so that together we can be the generation that creates change."
Senior Douglas Hayes encouraged students to consider "Every day we should strive to bring our 'whole' selves by exhibiting traits of maturity, honesty, authenticity and accountability, and consistently being the best version of ourselves." He asked students to exhibit trust and respect for everyone in the community, to set aside differences and care for each other, and to "realize our responsibility to be people of integrity and pioneers of positive impact." When students do that, create through caring and honesty a community where students feel at ease, he offered that then students can express their real character, share personal thoughts and make our community extraordinary."
Each year a member of the school staff also speaks about the meaning of the Honor Code. This year's speaker was Sarah Via, Upper School English teacher. She shared her experience in exchanging her wedding vows with her husband, and compared that solemn promise to the honor code's promise of holding oneself and others accountable, "being the best person you can be as often as possible...and setting aside my own self-interests which ultimately makes me a better person."
A representative from each class then came forward to sign the Honor Code on behalf of his/her classmates. The signees for each class were:
1st grade—Ava Cilento
2nd grade—Liam Beckman
3rd grade—Ella Domask
4th grade—Drake Arnold
5th grade—Reese Narcisenfeld
6th grade—Samantha Yagoda
7th grade—Dillon Malkani
8th grade—Charlotte Caine
9th grade—Bryan Tan
10th grade—Charlotte Helmig
11th grade—Zak Khera
12th grade—Jon Glass
On behalf of the Bullis faculty and staff, Head of School Dr. Gerald L. Boarman signed the Honor Code.
After a week of orientation and experiential education activities, Bullis students are now ready to get to work in their classes, on their teams and with their activities, and the Honor Code provides the perfect framework to do so with character and community always at the forefront.