How one school is putting in extra measures to tackle the force of Andrew Tate

How one school is putting in extra measures to tackle the force of Andrew Tate
Andrew Tate leaves Romanian court shouting 'you will find out the truth'

"Iconic" and "a force for good" is how some men have described Andrew Tate, whose cultish influence now runs deep within schools. This is the same man who said women belong to men, compared them to "carousels" – along with a long string of other vile misogynistic criticisms.

Tate, who is currently being held in custody as part of a probe into human trafficking, rape, and organised crime, has become one of the most ubiquitous names online – and one of the most controversial.

The Tates of the world have always existed. The aggressive entitlement and misogynistic trope was once positioned as locker room talk and has since evolved with modern times. Social media is – or was– Tate's playground.

Tate's wealthy, cigar-smoking, Bugatti-driving lifestyle is a magnet for early to mid-adolescent boys hailing him the Top G. His 'articulate', 'charismatic' character makes them feel like he's fighting their corner. When in reality, he's a soon-to-be middle-aged man spewing problematic hot takes warped in a “giddy 'comedic' vitriol”.

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Andrew Tate responds to Greta Thunberg's comments about him @cobratate/Twitter

It would be naive to assume Tate is unaware of his audience. How do you think he made the millions (or "trillions") he claims to have? His business mindset has exploited his followers and monetised from them in the process.

Worryingly, it's birthed an influx of worshippers more than half his age – an issue too prominent to ignore in schools around the world. Stretford High School in Greater Manchester is one of the many schools taking on the force of Tate.

"Teenagers are easily seduced by expensive trinkets," Nicola Doward, headteacher at Stretford High School, told Indy100, adding that they then become "vulnerable" to believe everything he says. "He became like a gateway drug for misogyny."

"The more outrageous he became, the more society and the media rewarded him with fame and money - he became a lifestyle icon for teenage boys," Mrs Doward added, emphasising that it's not all boys, just a "small number of 'true believers'".

This, hand-in-hand with the cognitive development of teen boys, soon became a heady mix for teachers. Just as the students' minds were ready to expand, along came Tate to taint them.

Sadly, it was young girls at the receiving end of their behavioural shift.

"They have reported that Tate's misogynistic catchphrases are being used against them," Mrs Doward explained. "They have also reported that the attitude of some boys has become more confrontational."

Tate's force has gone as far as creating "rifts between many friendship groups that used to exist."


It's a complex dynamic for schools to address – as Stretford High have experienced firsthand.

You have high schoolers impressed by Tate's obscene views who are prepared to go head-to-head with anyone who challenges them. They feel attacked by the backlash against toxic masculinity, igniting their angst and desire to defend their newfound icon.

The school "confronted the issue immediately" once they became aware of it, with lessons developed for the year 10 group.

"We started off looking at an individual that our students didn't really know and had no feelings about - Jimmy Savile," Mrs Doward said, adding: "This was to establish a baseline of how someone can fly under the radar of the media and commit atrocities. At this point, all of the students were shocked by what he did and how he got away with it."

Attention soon turned to Elon Musk, and claims that he desires to control the media by buying Twitter. This was to reinforce how the media can be manipulated and monetised.

Finally, teachers across the school introduced Tate, prioritising question-asking over criticism.

Mrs Doward explained: "We asked what he had done that could be celebrated or criticised. We asked how he had made his money. We asked what kind of person was signing up for courses at his Hustler's University when those courses were available for free elsewhere on the internet. We asked why he had pointed out that his statements were not representative of his own views but were rather the views of a 'comedic character' that he had created called 'Andrew Tate' (sort of comparing him to the character of Borat, created by Sacha Baron Cohen)."

Teachers also ensured they were also asking "deeply uncomfortable questions" – something that the students had not encountered before.

For the most part, students "started to back away from [Tate]" once they worked out "he was saying controversial things for money."

"It was interesting that when Greta Thunberg famously took him on over Christmas on social media he was shown to be deeply inept at arguing his point. He was unused to being held accountable and to facing pushback."

However, teachers did experience a handful of "true believers" making "comical attempts to defend him."

While Andrew Tate could very well disappear from the public eye at some point, "he will just create a vacuum for somebody else to inhabit."

But, if there's one positive from the saturation of Tate, it's that his views have rightfully raised many issues and questions within society.

"We need to address the circumstances that led to a generation of young men becoming vulnerable to falling under the spell of a man like Andrew Tate," Mrs Doward said.

"Discussions about positive masculinity should definitely be put front and centre. This is not a quick fix. Tate has exploited a situation and monetised it...but he didn't create it."

Following his social media bans last year, Tate claimed he was simply "playing a comedic character."

In a statement at the time, he insisted his remarks were taken out of context and claimed to have donated more than $1 million (£845k) to charities supporting women at the time.

In a video shared to his website in August, Tate said: "I have some responsibility to bear. I still blame myself, because my rise has been so meteoric and I became so famous so quickly."

"My responsibility is that any negative connotations in my videos are removed. The way you say things in a video that gets 500 views is very different from the way you say things in a video that gets 50 million views – the more people you reach, the more important it is that people don’t take things out of context."

"If there was as many people cutting up videos like they did mine and those people had a negative agenda, they could make Mickey Mouse look evil, you could make anyone look bad."

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