Difference in locker rooms prompts strong student reactions

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Photo by Indie Ahl ’24

Staples boys’ football locker room (right) and the Staples girls’ locker room (left) are drastically different.

The Staples boys’ football locker room appears to mirror a college football locker room set up: the room contains a large, spacious, main area with individual lockers for the players lined along the walls; attached from this are multiple other rooms such as showers, a bathroom, and offices, even with a mini basketball hoop for entertainment. Meanwhile, the girls’ locker room for all sports, along with a second boys’ locker room, is simply lockers and benches in a smaller space.

Due to the discrepancy between the facilities, many athletes feel like they are given the short end of the stick.

Field hockey player Sophia Blum ’23 commented on the lack of space in the girls’ locker room due to how many teams use it. 

“I know some girls that don’t even change in the locker room,” Blum said.  “I’ve changed in my car before because it’s really crowded […] every single grade is in there.” 

Blum also expressed how many athletes feel underappreciated in their sports, despite recent successes. The field hockey team has won four state championships within the last six years. 

“It constantly just feels like we don’t get the recognition we deserve,” she said. “Just like other girls’ sports, like girls’ soccer. They’re really good and they work really hard, and, like, we don’t get as many privileges as the boys’ football team.”

Staples boys’ rugby has also found recent success. They are ranked nationally and won the state championship in 2021. Despite this, they haven’t been able to utilize the bigger locker room.

I would be more than willing to look at remodeling the girls locker rooms as well, but I’ve never been approached by a single booster club to do it.”

— Athletic Director Marty Lisevick

“Personally, I think that the football team is overfunded for sure, and they’re not really deserving of all the stuff that they have,” rugby player Kellen Archibald ’24 said. “It should be shared with the programs that actually deserve it.” 

Athletic Director Marty Lisevick elaborated on the usage of the locker room. 

“We’ve used that for football, lacrosse, basketball’s used it, baseball’s used it, so it’s not just a football locker room,” Lisevick said. “[…] Rugby has basically that other new locker room which is right down the hallway from it, which is pretty nice also.”

Lisevick explained that football uses the locker room in the fall, wrestling and basketball have access to it in the winter, and lacrosse mainly uses it in the spring. There are other uses as well.

“We even have used it for officials during games to go down there and change,” he said.

Staples boys’ football locker room contains a mini basketball hoop game. (Photo by Indie Ahl ’24)

Lisevick also explained how the locker room was funded. 

“It’s privately done,” he said. “The Gridiron Club helped pay for it, the lacrosse boosters helped pay for it, we had baseball money that came in, wrestling money came in – the wrestlers used it in the winter as a practice area – basketball threw some money in it as well.” 

In response to the discrepancy with the much smaller girl’s locker room, Lisevick hasn’t ruled out addressing it. 

“I would be more than willing to look at remodeling the girls locker rooms as well,” he said, “but I’ve never been approached by a single booster club to do it.”

He enforces the idea by establishing ice hockey as being very expensive, not just football, because they have to rent a bus to take the players to a rink far away that’s also being rented out.

“This idea that football gets all the money is arcadic, it’s not accurate,” Liveseck said. “If you’d look at the funding for the Board of Education, there are some girls sports that are far better funded percentage wise on a player per player dollar amount than football is.”