Assistant Principal to HS Girls: 'Ladies, I Still Blame You for Boys’ Low Grades'

Assistant Principal to HS Girls: 'Ladies, I Still Blame You for Boys’ Low Grades'

Telling girls that their clothing hinders someone else’s education or actions is senseless.
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It’s the first week of classes at Clements High School in Sugar Land, Texas, an affluent city of about 80,000 near the southeast corner of the state. The juniors, now proud upperclassmen, excitedly filled the auditorium seats to hear their administrative staff and faculty welcome them back. Or so they thought…

On August 24th, 2016, Assistant Principal Phil Morgante pledged his case in support of the high school’s dress code policy by perpetuating misogynistic stereotypes which were offensive to young women and young men. In an audio recorded by one of the students, Morgante can be heard saying, “Now girls, I know you are trying to work on your abs since the Olympics, right? But your shirts can’t be up here, it’s gotta cover the whole gut. So, cover up… um. Let’s see…ripped clothing; why would you spend (unclear mumbling).”



Towards the end, he states, “Ladies, I still blame you all for boys’ low grades because of tight clothing.” Students confirmed that the audio started after Morgante made the initial comment about male students already having trouble studying and how the girls’ tight clothing only made it worse.

Many students immediately took this to social media to express their outrage on the issue. The names in the following pictures are censored to keep the girls anonymous.



Morgante, who has been part of the Fort Bend ISD in Texas for 25 years, unintentionally promoted a culture that constantly blames women for actions of men. This culture is just as insulting to men because it implies that they are incapable of controlling their actions. While the principal of the school, David Yaffie, apologized the next day on Morgante’s behalf, the problem remains: there are too many school administrations who share this view.

Clements High School is one of the top 100 high school in Texas, and kids from this school end up in universities all over the nation. The fact that the boys are being taught so young that a girl’s clothes justifies what men do to them is beyond alarming. Just a few days ago, 18-year old David Becker, who sexually assaulted two unconscious girls, was let free because the judge wanted him to “enjoy a college experience.” What about the college experience of the girls who were left scarred for life by his actions? Apparently, that didn’t matter all that much just so long Becker didn’t have to endure the “stigma of being a registered sex offender,” as his lawyer casually stated.

When between 20 and 25 percent women are sexually assaulted on college campuses, it really does matter what one faculty member says in one high school assembly. The ideology behind victim blaming is not innate, it is taught. Women are constantly told to not walk outside late, not wear revealing clothes, watch how much you drink. Yet men are never repeatedly told one simple thing: don’t rape. Why is it that it is always women who must look out for themselves? People never tell victims of robbery that it was their fault to have cash or tell victims of car crashes to not drive on the street…I understand that there is nothing wrong with taking precautions; however, telling girls that their clothing hinders someone else’s education or actions is senseless.

Apart from accusing the girls, another disturbing aspect of Morgante’s comments were that he assumed that boys do not possess the self-control to focus on their studies rather than looking at the girls’ “tight clothing.” Our society tends to give men less credit than they deserve when it comes to them doing the right thing. If boys in high school are old enough to work jobs and understand complex game plans, then they are more than capable of focusing on their own work without getting distracted.

Cliché statements such as “boys will be boys” prevents young men from accepting their responsibilities and owning up to their actions. One bothered male student tweeted the following in agreement to his female classmate.

It is obvious that boys and girls alike agree that holding girls and their clothing responsible for boys’ low grades is ridiculous. While the majority of the new generation shares this consensus, the issue lies within the mentality of older people who then corrupt developing minds with their faulty reasoning. Fortunately, Clements High School’s students speaking out against their assistant principal resulted in the situation being addressed. If other students, teachers, parents can all unite against this stereotype, then maybe as a community we can eradicate the roots of victim blaming and rape culture.

Tell us what you think about the story on social media using the hashtag #LadiesIBlameYou.

UPDATE: As a result of this story, the local school board has released this statement:

"During assemblies last week, when speaking about the dress code, a Clements High School administrator made comments that were inappropriate and offensive to students. These comments should not have been made, and do not represent the beliefs of Fort Bend ISD or the Clements administrative team or faculty."

"The comments were a failed attempt at humor and inappropriate. Following concerns expressed by students, the Clements principal took prompt action to address the comments and apologized to the student body. We have high expectations for both students and staff at Clements High School and throughout Fort Bend ISD. Our goal is to provide a safe, positive learning environment where all students feel supported and valued. Please know this situation is being addressed, and appropriate actions will be taken."

Cover Image Credit: Fort Bend ISD

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.
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Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:" Line Matters,

I want to by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can't afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you're just lazy and you “don't feel like it"?

Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you're unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck." stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:" line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can't seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to 10 people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!"

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the 17 other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there's a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of 10 times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession — whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half-off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a $40 bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes — as if you're better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you'll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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10 Pieces Of Advice From My Parents That Have Helped Me Survive This Thing Called Life

I don't like admitting that they're right, but they've helped me through more than they'll ever know.

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As I've entered my 20s and have made it halfway through college, I've learned that life can be hard and challenging at times. Like many kids, when I was growing up, I could care less about what my parent's advice or opinions were. Nine times out of ten, I would do the complete opposite of what they said. Once I got older and actually started listening to their advice and put it into perceptive, I learned that they're right more often than I'd like to admit.

1. Don't take things for granted

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I've learned to cherish what I have because I might not always have it. It's easy to take life itself and many things it involves for granted. They've taught me to take a step back from this crazy life sometimes and be grateful for all that I have.

2. Don't be afraid to put your heart on your sleeve

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My parents have taught me that if you feel something, don't be afraid to say it or embrace it. If you love someone, then tell them. Don't be afraid to put your heart out there just because you might get hurt.

3. Be vulnerable

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In life, in relationships, in your work. Take risks, get shot down, and then try again. Being vulnerable is scary yet so powerful.

4. You can never have too many shoes

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Otherwise known as it's okay to treat yourself. Life is hard, so take care of you. If that means going on a shopping spree every once in a while, then so be it.

5. You're going to be okay

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Whatever it is you're going through, you're going through it and you're going to come out on the other side. It may seem horrible now, but you'll learn from it and be okay in the end.

6. You have to have friends in life

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It's important to have people to lean on, especially on your bad days, and to celebrate with on your good ones. You can't just have you or a significant other to rely on.

7. Never be afraid to share your opinion

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Don't be afraid to put your thoughts and opinions out there because they might be wrong. They could have a huge impact on someone or something.

8. Don't stress over things you have no control over

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Everyone is on their own path, which means everything will work out the way it's supposed to, even if it doesn't make sense right now. Again, you're going to be okay.

9. Happy, healthy, wealthy, wise

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My dad always says if you tell yourself every day that you're happy with yourself or your life, you're healthy and strong, you're wealthy in love and surrounded by great people, and you're knowledgable or wise, then you can achieve anything in life.

10.  S*** or get off the pot

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My all-time favorite piece of advice. Making decisions can be hard and scary, especially if the outcome could be getting hurt in the end. So, you either make a decision and roll with it no matter the outcome or you walk away.

Thanks, mom and dad for always being a phone call away when I need it! Just know that your advice and words of wisdom don't go unnoticed. For others, your parents have been on this planet much longer than you have and most likely experienced the same situations that you're dealing with. They don't have all the answers, but they are there to help.

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