Locked Out

Kael Dimmer

You’re a student-athlete just finishing practice, and you and your teammates are starting the walk back to the locker room from the field. Once you reach the door though, you realize that it has been padlocked shut. The only available path to the locker room is now to walk around the entire school and enter through the unlocked doors at the front. 

The locker room doors being locked is an everyday struggle for all athletes at Mount Vernon High School, and it causes them to waste precious time by walking around a door that should be open. Student-athletes are already stressed for time, and the valuable minutes wasted by walking around the building can make the difference between tardiness and being on time.

The reason that these doors are locked is a good one, it just has unintended consequences. The safety of the students is the number one priority for the administration, and they felt that the locker room doors being unlocked gave anyone potential access to the school, and that obviously isn’t safe.  The problem, though, is that many students who signed up for parking spots at the back of the school relied on these doors to enter and exit the building. Not to mention the athletes that have practice fields behind the school who have to walk double the distance back to the locker room.

A prime example of a sport whose players are impacted by this is the Mount Vernon soccer players. “Having unlocked locker room doors are essential for soccer,” said junior Ava Dimmer. “It’s a spring sport, and for most of the season, our cleats become caked with mud and dirt, which had never been too much of a problem as we could simply walk straight up to the locker room and walk inside. But, because the locker room doors are now sealed, we have to walk all the way around the school and carry our muddy cleats through the entirety of the building.” Ava also mentioned that the team’s muddy cleats can leave mud and dirt behind on their trip through the school. This is problematic because the janitors Steve and Spencer have to put even more effort into cleaning the school for something that could be avoided.

One potential fix for this issue would be to issue team captains a key to the locker room. This would ensure that athletes would be able to enter and exit the locker room freely, without any lost security because the chosen team captain would be a trustworthy and responsible person. 

Students at Mount Vernon feel that the locker room doors need to be utilized to their original purpose, and whatever the best solution is, it needs to be implemented immediately.