Bay Middle School students give extreme makeovers to school lockers

Phoebe Lindway decorates her locker in preparation for a year in the sixth grade at Bay Middle School.

Bay Middle School students had an opportunity to stock, organize and decorate the interiors of their lockers before the start of school on Thursday, Aug. 22.

Principal Sean McAndrews said students get two full days prior to the start of school to come in and try out their locker combinations and set up a personal space that would put many home closets to shame.

"We have found, especially with fifth-graders, that the biggest fear about school is getting their lockers open, closed and getting out their books," said McAndrews. "So we have a fifth-grade orientation where our eighth-grade students teach fifth-graders how to use their locker combinations."

McAndrews notes that there is a huge surge in products especially made for school lockers, from organizers and baskets to pretty paper that gives a wallpapered appearance.

"The girls tend to do a lot more than the boys," said Mary Jane Jull, the mother of two boys, the youngest an eighth-grader at Bay Middle School. "The boys do like to put organizers in. The girls, though, really do it up big."

Besides colorful wallpaper and organizers, students could be seen adding photos, cartoons, magnetic mirrors, pen holders and other gadgets to the interior walls of their lockers.

"As long as they don't cause damage to the lockers, we like this," said McAndrews. "It's an example of how our kids take pride in themselves, and it gets them excited to come to school."

Bay Village Schools psychologist Melissa Grimes agrees. "Lockers are the first taste of privacy at school at a moment in life when that means a lot," she said. "But at the same time, lockers are public and they can be an ideal platform to convey one's image."

Principal McAndrews really enjoys the days that students come into school before the official year begins. "It's good for students to set up their lockers early and see some teachers setting up their rooms, too,"he said.

He added, "It's also good for the principal to see kids in this informal way, enjoy the excitement, and remember precisely why he got into this business."

Karen Derby

Public Information Officer for the Bay Village City School District

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Volume 5, Issue 17, Posted 9:56 AM, 08.20.2013