College students expressed their disagreement towards policies introduced by De La Salle Lipa’s (DLSL) College Student Discipline Formation Office (SDFO) at the reorientation of the College Discipline Policies and Procedures (CDPP) held at the Sentrum from Sept. 25 to 27.
In a segment that discussed the dress code policy, Concepcion Endozo, an officer from the SDFO, said that crossdressing or the act of wearing clothes that is typical of the other sex is prohibited and deemed as inappropriate.
She further explained that the students should uphold the values and beliefs of DLSL and said that they respect students’ gender identities but they do not advocate for such acts to be practiced.
“We do not promote any activities that promote LGBTQ+ […] as a Christian school,” said Endozo.
Jan Aubrey Tabernilla, a third-year BS Psychology student, hopes the school would reconsider the policies because it would be impossible for the DLSL to progress if they maintain the conservative mindset usually observed in Christian schools.
“Wala naman talagang kinalaman yung suot natin or ng mga taong part ng LGBTQIA+ community sa pag-aaral nila […] parang sinasabi nila na it’s okay to be part of the LGBTQIA+ community pero hindi natin siya pwede i-act,” said Tabernilla.
CITE and CEAS students during the reorientation at DLSL Sentrum. (H. Jain)
Moreover, the SDFO also mentioned guidelines on the appropriate hair length for men and the school’s ban on multiple earrings and body piercings. The SDFO officers said the rules are similar to workplace policies and questioned students on whether having body piercings will make them smarter.
Jean Aubrey Villapando, a fourth-year BS Industrial Engineering student, expressed her concern that the institution is ignoring the importance of students’ personal comfort, preference, and individuality.
“Mas nakatatalino ba kung hindi kami magsusuot ng piercings? It is a form of self-expression, [the] bottom line is they [SDFO] should never diminish our value as a person,” said Villapando.
Patrick Inabayan orienting the students from CITE and CEAS Department. (H. Alcantara)
As the orientation utilized Slido, a Q&A platform that allows people to submit queries anonymously, Endozo said it was saddening that many of the anonymous questions submitted were offensive. She mentioned that institutions, especially private schools like DLSL, have the right to enforce rules and regulations according to their beliefs.
“I hope that doon sa pagrerespeto namin sa gender identity niyo, [I] hope you respect the values of the school and if hindi tayo magkakasundo doon, then you are free to leave the school,” said Endozo.
The SDFO said that they are open to entertain students who may have further concerns about the discussed policies in their office on the third floor of the Mabini building.
Article by Jannaya Barrion and Mahnlene Dela Peña