Emma Argues With Principal Figgins


Have you ever had one of those moments where you just couldn’t hold back how you felt any longer? Emma was pushed to her limit with Principal Figgins and his rigid rules. She had always been the model student, following every instruction to a T and maintaining perfect grades. But everyone has a breaking point, and Emma had reached hers. She had watched for weeks now as Figgins implemented ridiculous new policies and harsh punishments that seemed to target her friends. His tyrannical style of leadership was turning the school into a joyless institution.

Emma knew it was time for someone to stand up to the principal. She realized it might as well be her, and this story is about how she found her voice and the courage to argue with Principal Figgins. Get ready to cheer Emma on as she says everything you’ve ever wanted to say to an unreasonable authority figure. Sometimes you have to fight for what’s right.

Background on Emma and Principal Figgins’ Relationship

Emma Pillsbury, the quirky but caring guidance counselor at McKinley High, didn’t always see eye to eye with Principal Figgins. Their relationship was strained from the start.

Figgins hired Emma hoping her OCD and “neat freak” tendencies would whip the school into shape. However, he soon realized Emma’s anxiety and phobias made her ill-suited for serious discipline or policy changes. Emma preferred to help students with their personal problems and college applications rather than enforce rules.

Emma’s close relationship with Will Schuester, the glee club director, also irked Figgins. He saw glee club as a distraction and Will as a thorn in his side. Emma frequently took Will’s side in arguments and disagreed with Figgins’ attempts to cut funding for the arts program.

The final straw came when Emma accompanied Will and his students to spy on a rival glee club, violating Figgins’ policy against “unauthorized field trips.” When confronted, Emma stood up for Will and his unorthodox teaching methods. Figgins demanded her resignation, straining their relationship to the breaking point.

Emma and Figgins eventually reconciled, realizing McKinley High needed them both. But for a time, Emma’s loyalty to Will and the glee club kids trumped her duty to follow Figgins’ orders. Her willingness to fight for the underdogs and misfits she believed in defined Emma’s role as a guidance counselor. And it showed Figgins the value of having a caring heart and open mind at the helm of William McKinley High School.

The Heated Argument: What Sparked Emma’s Frustration

Emma cared deeply about her students and wanted the best for them. So when Principal Figgins refused to allow an student-organized climate change protest, Emma was frustrated. She knew this was an opportunity for students to have their voices heard on an issue that would impact them for years to come.

Emma made an impassioned case to Principal Figgins that student initiatives should be supported and nurtured, not stifled. She argued that schools should evolve to meet students’ needs – both emotional and academic. And on climate change, the students were simply asking for a chance to raise awareness about an existential crisis that would shape their futures.

Principal Figgins contended that the protest could be disruptive. But Emma pointed out that a single afternoon of activism could galvanize students and bring real learning. She suggested starting small, with an optional event. Students who wished to participate could do so, while others continued with classes as usual.

Emma recognized that as an educator, her role was to guide students to think critically about issues that mattered to them. She saw this as an opportunity for authentic learning, not “disruption.” The students had organized this themselves and were passionate about the cause.

While Principal Figgins remained unconvinced, Emma hoped she had at least given him pause. She knew that sometimes rules needed to bend to allow students’ voices to be heard. And on an issue as monumental as climate change, it seemed foolish to silence those voices when they were just beginning to speak up. Emma left his office frustrated but determined to keep fighting for her students and their future.

Highlights From Emma and Figgins’ Confrontation

Emma and Principal Figgins had an intense confrontation in his office. Their heated discussion highlighted some of the key issues around student activism versus school administration control.

Emma voices her concerns

Emma went to see Principal Figgins to express her objections to some of the school’s policies that she felt unfairly targeted marginalized groups. She brought up issues like dress code enforcement that seemed to disproportionately affect female students, as well as a lack of accommodations for students with anxiety or other issues.

Emma argued that “the system is rigged” against certain students and that their voices weren’t being heard. She accused Principal Figgins of being out of touch with the challenges today’s students face. Emma suggested that the school form a student advisory council to give young people a say in decision-making.

Figgins pushes back

Principal Figgins didn’t take Emma’s criticisms lightly. He asserted that as principal, he had a duty to maintain order and discipline. He said that school policies were designed to create a respectful learning environment for all, though he admitted they could use some updating.

Figgins contended that a student council wouldn’t have the experience or objectivity to shape policy. However, he agreed the school could improve how it communicates with students and addresses their concerns. He proposed launching focus groups and surveys to gather student feedback in a constructive way.

Finding common ground

While tensions were high at first, Emma and Principal Figgins ultimately found some common ground. They both cared about the well-being of students, even if they disagreed on how best to support them. Dialog and a willingness to listen enabled them to move past their initial confrontation. Compromise and cooperation, not conflict, would be needed to drive real change. Their passionate discussion highlighted the need to balance student advocacy with administrative leadership. Overall, open communication and understanding could help bridge the divide.

Aftermath – How Did the Argument Impact Emma and Figgins?

The argument between Emma and Principal Figgins sent shockwaves through the school. For Emma, it cemented her role as an activist willing to stand up for marginalized students. For Figgins, it highlighted how out of touch he was with the challenges today’s students face.

Emma emerged emboldened. She realized that while her methods were unconventional, her cause was just. Her peers rallied around her, energized by her courage and conviction. Emma’s argument made it clear that she would not stop advocating for change.

On the other hand, Figgins was left grappling with the realization that he did not fully understand his students. His narrow-mindedness and unwillingness to listen had been exposed. Figgins’ old-fashioned views were no longer relevant or acceptable.

The confrontation forced Figgins to re-examine his leadership. If he wanted to be an effective principal, he needed to do better at addressing students’ wellbeing and hearing their concerns. Figgins had to evolve with the times if he wanted to gain back students’ respect.

In the end, Emma’s argument with Figgins highlighted the need for schools to continually adapt to support students. While their confrontation was heated, it shed light on important issues and pushed Figgins outside his comfort zone into much-needed change. Emma knew that progress, however slow, was a victory – she had given marginalized students a voice and that was a battle worth fighting for.

Lessons Learned – Better Ways Emma Could Have Handled the Situation

Emma could have handled her argument with Principal Figgins in a better way. Some lessons she learned:

Communication is key

Emma should have first tried to have an open, respectful dialog with Principal Figgins before confronting him publicly. Expressing her concerns privately may have helped clarify any misunderstandings and find a compromise. If that didn’t work, Emma could have suggested mediation with a guidance counselor. Communication is the foundation for resolving conflicts.

Choose your battles wisely

While Emma felt passionately about the issue, she could have considered whether a public confrontation was the most effective approach or if it might damage her working relationship with Principal Figgins going forward. If the policy was unlikely to change, Emma’s efforts may have been better spent advocating to school board members or organizing students and parents.

Stay calm and composed

Emma’s anger and frustration caused her to become aggressive in her approach. Responding emotionally often escalates tensions and damages the possibility of a productive discussion. Emma would have been better served remaining calm, composed and solution-focused. Reacting angrily frequently achieves little and undermines one’s credibility and persuasiveness.

Consider compromises

Rather than an “all or nothing” stance, Emma could have proposed compromises and been open to alternative options. For example, if after-school activities were the concern, she might have suggested a trial basis or limiting the number of days. Compromise and flexibility are more likely to lead to a satisfactory resolution for everyone.

While Emma’s daring challenge showed admirable passion, the confrontation ultimately achieved little. In the future, Emma will be better equipped to advocate for change through open communication, choosing impactful moments, remaining composed, and considering compromise. Her experience with Principal Figgins provided a valuable lesson in working with authority figures to address important issues.


Look, you all know how frustrating high school can be. The rules, the drama, the annoying teachers on power trips. We’ve all been there. So while Emma’s outburst may have been a bit over the top, you gotta give her some credit for standing up for herself. Principal Figgins needed to be put in his place, and our girl did just that. Emma’s never been one to back down from a fight for what she believes in.

She’s a fighter, that one. But more than that, she’s real. Emma speaks the truth, calls out injustice when she sees it, and isn’t afraid to challenge authority. We could all learn a thing or two from her spirit. So the next time you feel like the Man is trying to get you down, channel your inner Emma and let your voice be heard. You’ll be glad you did. Stay strong and stay real!

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