Is WHAS (Women’s Health Absence System) necessary? This is a big issue among the Soongsilians. It’s easy to go on a menstrual leave from school. To be specific, when female students skip school due to menstrual pain, they simply need to submit an absence report called WHAN (Women’s Health Absence Notice). Although WHAS allows the female students to enjoy their right to health and motherhood protection, it is in danger of being abolished on the ground that too many female students are misusing it.
A lot of female students are using WHAN incorrectly, and this is the reason that WHAS has become a big issue in the campus. Take one situation as an example. A female student skips school one day because she does not want to go to her classes. She thus submits a WHAN. As a result, her absence is considered excused and is thus not recorded as an absence. In the same situation, if a male student does the same thing, his absence will never be considered excused and thus will always be recorded as an absence. This is a very common WHAN misuse case, and this is why some students think of WHAS as a form of sexual discrimination.
I’ve met many female students who use WHAN for its supposed purpose of excusing their absence due to menstrual pain, and I’ve also met a lot of female students who are misusing WHAN. In my judgment, most of the latter students are not fully cognizant of their misuse of WHAN. Let me cite some more examples. Many female students use WHAN when they’re sick. This is wrong because WHAN should be used to excuse an absence due to menstrual cramps as a rule, not to excuse an absence due to any other condition or sickness. Many female students also turn in a WHAN for an absence due to some other unavoidable reason. Although plausible at a glance, it is actually absolutely wrong. If a female student skips her class, it should be considered an absence unless it was for a valid reason like suffering from menstrual cramps. Many female students who misuse WHAN, however, do not consider it a serious issue. Even if they know that what they’re doing is wrong, they do not change their ways right away due to selfish thoughts like “Other people are also doing it” or “I know it’s wrong, but my grades are more important.” These wrong thoughts must be corrected to reduce the arguments regarding WHAS.
It is not a shame to use WHAN, but it is a shame to misuse it. Those who misuse WHAN ought to be ashamed of themselves and ought to try to act more fairly. The school is also making an effort to help the female students understand the purpose of WHAS. The school can either hold a briefing session on it or conduct a campaign about it. There are many ways to do it. If WHAS will only go in the right direction, it will be a good system and will not be tantamount to sexual discrimination.