Cheerleaders Treated Unfairly

Letter to the Editor

By Cynthia Ramirez '18

A Ninth Amendment Violation is in question at Westwood High School.
[Editor’s Note: The Ninth Amendment is not related to the current cheerleader situation. We believe the author meant to say “Title IX,” which is an anti-discrimination law meant to ensure that both sexes are treated equitably in sports programs.]

Westwood High School in Austin, Texas, has dismissed over half of their cheerleaders and is accusing them of vaping off and on school campus.

It all started out with one cheerleader. Someone turned in pictures of her vaping and posting it on her own social media. Someone then submitted the pictures of her vaping and the Principal at Westwood High School Mr. Acosta, had no mercy and quickly dismissed her. Now the Principal Mr. Acosta was already having problems with this particular cheerleader’s mother prior to him dismissing her. The cheerleader’s mother was causing all sorts of problems with the school staff, cheer coaches, principal, cheer booster club, etc. It’s interesting and so coincidental how all of a sudden pictures showed up of her as if someone was finding a reason to get rid of her mother by dismissing this cheerleader.

After the first cheerleader was dismissed then that cheerleader and her mother were so upset that they wanted to have other cheerleaders dismissed so they turned in pictures of several other cheerleaders vaping off campus. The principal Mr. Acosta began to dismiss several more because if he didn’t then he would be facing a lawsuit by not dismissing other cheerleaders in the same manner. The dismissed cheerleader’s problematic mother was threatening to sue if he didn’t dismiss the other cheerleaders. So now they hardly have a team because now everyone started turning in pictures of the cheerleaders just to have them dismissed.

Mr. Acosta stated that only the cheerleaders have to be dismissed because they have a zero-tolerance cheerleaders’ handbook, but he also concluded that all the other sports like football, volleyball, basketball, etc, have a path towards reinstatement if they violate the tobacco, drugs, and alcohol rule, meaning that every other sport in the school will only receive a three week suspension from their teams and they are back in their teams! I mean how unfair and discriminating is that?

The cheerleaders have to be dismissed because they have a zero-tolerance cheerleaders’ handbook.”

When the cheerleaders’ parents confronted Mr. Acosta and complained that this was a violation of the ninth amendment and that this was a huge sex discrimination occurring in his school, the parents asked why do the football players only receive a three-week suspension from the team but that the cheerleaders receive a permanent dismissal and must turn in their uniforms immediately! And they can not try out for cheer or any other sport for a whole entire year in all the RRISD! The punishment is 10 times worse than any other sport! The rules and policies are not applied consistently to all students. There is a disproportionality of disciplinary action consequences in female sports versus male sports in Westwood High school and nobody seems to care or do anything about it. The fact that female athletes have a greater form of punishment versus male athletes is a violation of the ninth amendment.

Several parents are outraged over this. Imagine how discriminating that is. How can they make it so obvious that they are disposing cheerleaders as if they were insignificant, disposable, and replaceable but yet they can’t lose their football players because the football players are working towards and depending on school scholarships that will get them into a good college but yet the cheerleaders are not as important and their future doesn’t really matter to any school officials at Westwood including Mr. Acosta. Now, this school has been making the news a lot lately since the new principal has started a couple of years ago. Mr. Acosta is always hiding scandals and sweeping it under the rug just so he can make believe he is handling the school well. Well, that’s not the case, the reality is, they have disposed of 11 cheerleaders over a one month period. Mr. Acosta has stated to concerned parents that Westwood doesn’t need a cheerleading team! That they can do without one, but yet all the football players stay intact, not one is dismissed or disposed of.

They are down to 11 cheerleaders from 21 in just one month.”

Mr. Acosta will accept a picture of any cheerleader vaping, smoking or drinking and will use it do get rid of more cheerleaders. So if anyone would like to submit more pictures of cheerleaders partying then he will gladly accept them and dismiss that cheerleader. So everyone in the community — if you’re reading this, please feel free to do so. Cheerleaders are disposable at Westwood and if you don’t like one of them just send a picture to Becky Donald, the superintendent at Westwood High school in Austin Texas — her email is [email protected] — and CC [email protected], and they will gladly receive any pictures from anyone or anonymous if you prefer and they will get rid of that cheerleader for you! It’s sad but it’s reality. All it takes is a picture; doesn’t matter how old the picture is either, they have stated the picture could have been taken anytime and anywhere and they will still get the boot. They are down to 11 cheerleaders from 21 in just one month so they are anxious to get rid of more. After all, they are just girls! But God forbid the Westwood football team be gone! Mr. Acosta will never allow his boys to be shamed or disposed of, he needs to win those football games and Scholarships! After all, they don’t need a cheerleading team as he has stated several times before.

[Editor’s note: For the purpose of clarity, this letter has been edited for spelling and punctuation errors only. The opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author, not those of Westwood Student Press.]