Shower Shortage Causes Stress


“Men using restrooms or showers until 8:30 a.m” Sign posted on women’s locker room.

Male students have used the women’s locker room in the HS Coliseum every week since September in order to shower in time for class because there are not enough showers for both men and women.

For almost 10 months now, male athletes who exercise in the morning have used the showers in the women’s locker room after soccer or basketball practice as a means to save time, ultimately leaving women staff and students unable to make use of the showers until 8:30 a.m.

I have not been affected directly this year because I have just started riding my bike to school again. But when I did come up that first time and saw the sign on the girl’s locker room that said the boys could use this locker room, that made me feel really awkward,” Ariana Sophiea, Biology and AP Environmental Science Teacher, said.

There are only five showers in each locker room so the boys soccer and basketball teams use the women’s locker room so they could all shower faster and could get in time to class at 8:30.

“There are about 25 and 30 boys in soccer that come to practice in the early mornings, twice during the week. We’re limited with the number of showers that we have, so I believe that the boys are also using the girl’s locker rooms when there are no girls present,” Freddie Badillo, Sports and Extracurriculars Director, said.

Teachers use the showers in the morning for several reasons. Some train in the gym early before school starts, while many others ride to school on bicycles, a custom many foreign teachers have followed since they arrived in Medellín.

I bike two-three mornings a week. But now I have to go with the stipulation that possibly it’s going to be a boys locker room as well,” Emily Butterworth, English and AP Literature teacher, said.

On several occasions, the teachers who use the showers have had encounters with the male student-athletes in the morning, which has been a cause of controversy among staff members.

“I was getting out of the shower, and all the 9th and 10th-grade boys were coming in from soccer practice. So I was in my towel and I said ‘Hey, guys, what are you doing in here?’ And they’re like, ‘this is like our locker room.’ But they were very confused too, and they looked uncomfortable, to say the least,” Butterworth said.

As for next year, staff and administration members have considered several options concerning the lack of showers and controversial encounters between teachers and students.

There are two options looking at next year. It’s either the practices need to start earlier for the boy’s soccer, or they need to finish earlier so that there would be enough time for all the boys to be able to shower in the boy’s locker room before class starts,” Paul Navarra, High School Vice Principal, said.

In order to avoid more encounters between female teachers and male students, the soccer coaches placed a sign in the women’s locker rooms to inform women that male students can use the showers until 8:30. This has also negatively affected teachers as it does not leave time for the teachers to shower in time for school.

This has been up since September. And every day, technically according to this sign, this is a boys locker room until 8:30,” Butterworth said.