Chivalry assignment telling girls to ‘obey’ male classmates has one Texas school in hot water

A high school in Texas has come in for criticism over an assignment in “chivalry” in which girls were instructed to “obey” their male counterparts.

The “Chivalry Day” assignment at Shallowater High School in Lubbock County instructs female classmates to “obey any reasonable request of a male” student for the whole day.

In addition, girls were told to “dress in a feminine manner to please the men,” “cook…something for gentlemen of the class,” and to not show “intellectual superiority if it would offend the men around them.”

Brandi D. Addison, a reporter for the Dallas Morning News, shared images of the assignment on Twitter, which she described as “really…interesting.”

A picture of the “rules” posted with her tweet indicates the assignment is meant to “demonstrate to the school how the code of chivalry and standards set in the medieval concept of love carries over to the modern day.”

“They are requiring the female students to lower their heads and curtsy for men; clean up after men; cook for and bring a drink to the men’s class. This goes on for the entire day … even at home,” Addison wrote.

In an “update” later, she added, “I hear they changed the assignment after parents complained.”

Girls who followed the rules the closest, which was to be adjudged by adults, were to be given 10 points towards their grade for the assignment.

In addition, the instructions note further that “fathers and other adult males” were to report the behaviors of female students following class.

The Dallas Morning News reporter also posted a picture of instructions for male students taking part in the assignment asking them to dress in a suit and tie, demonstrate “courtly courtesy” by calling females “Milady” and other duties such as assisting them as they sat and reciting poetry to the class.

Several people commented on social media that they believed the assignment was offensive and unacceptable, though others believe “Chivalry Day” was just meant to show disparities and unfairness among the sexes in days gone by.

“‘[A]dult witness signature’?? OMG it’s a good thing my daughter didn’t bring this home for me to sign. I’d have put some ‘signs’ all over it,” one user wrote.

“This was absolutely horrific! I’m shocked! So glad they pulled the ‘Chivalry Day’; however, whoever thought this was a good idea in 2021 should immediately be mandated to enroll in a diversity and inclusion course. Teach gender equality NOT submissiveness in 2021!” Stephene Klein, a radio host, added.

Officials with the Shallowater Independent School District have since noted that the assignment has been canceled.

“This assignment has been reviewed, and despite its historical context, it does not reflect our district and community values,” wrote Superintendent Dr. Anita Herbert in a statement, Fox News reported. “The matter has been addressed with the teacher, and the assignment was removed.” 

Other details, such as which classes were to be assigned or what the lesson plan was intended to teach or demonstrate, were not clarified, Fox News noted.

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Jon Dougherty

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