Hiding From Bystander’s Eyes

On October 29, 2016, a 6-foot-tall, three-part foldable divider was put up to secure the privacy of the girls’ bathroom by the gym.

There had been no previous intention of such an idea until the divider showed up in the office, brought by an anonymous donor.

Since then, the divider has been useful in making the girls’ bathroom a more private place.

“It eliminates people from looking in. Sometimes, it’s just tempting [for other students],” PE teacher Jesus Del Real said.

Eighth grade student Jacalyn Zweifler likes the divider being there because it protects her and her classmates from being seen while they change into their PE clothes.

“[I like the divider being there] because when girls need to change in the bathroom, [others] can actually open the door [to exit]. When the divider wasn’t there, we were afraid that by opening the door, the boys could see in and so when we have this divider it blocks off all views of looking in,” she said.

The doors of the boys’ and girls’ bathroom are directly opposite from each other so when one of the doors are open, it is quite visible what is happening inside.

“It protects a girl from being seen in a way that she doesn’t want to be seen,” substitute teacher Jessica Kern said.

Del Real also said that the girls have been changing much faster since the divider was put up.

“About 80 percent [of the girls change outside of the stalls], and by having the divider, they can change freely in the bathroom [and] not in little corners or behind the door where many have gotten hit,” Zweifler said.

Since the divider proved useful for the girls’ bathroom, Del Real is looking at the idea of another divider for the boys’ bathroom, even if it may not seem as useful to them.

“The boys often wear their PE shirts underneath [their uniforms] and their shorts underneath as well,” Del Real said.

​This way, they can change without fear of exposing anything.

It is always better to be safe than sorry though.

“[The divider] is supposed to be up all day. Sometimes it falls, but if you know how to put it back up you can,” Del Real said.