LOWNDES COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI) — Some people loved to decorate the inside of them or it was the perfect place to meet up with friends. School lockers have been a symbol of American schools for decades but now they are on the way out.
“There’s less noise in the hallways, there’s more room in the hallways, it’s more attractive,” says Lowndes County Schools Assistant Superintendent Dr. Robin Ballard.
The locker is a symbol of freedom and privacy for students but can also be a source of distraction.
“The kids aren’t gathering around the lockers when they’re changing classes,” says Ballard.
Having a locker is like a rite of passage for middle schoolers but now that students aren’t carrying heavy books anymore, having a locker is becoming a thing of the past.
“I remember one person, she weighed her daughter. It was like 20lbs difference that they were carrying on their back. Removing the lockers has been kind of an evolution of change. It was not something that was mandated by the district. It’s something that the building level principals decided to do on their own,” says Ballard.
Electronic books and tablet readers are also becoming more popular. Still, administrators have found new ways for students to manage carrying the load of traditional textbooks.
“What we’ve done in the district is we’ve bought extra books so students have a set of books at home and a set of books at school to use. So there was really no need for having the locker,” Ballard said.
When Columbus Middle School opened in a new facility lockers were not installed. Lowndes County is also the latest district in the region to have textbooks on electronic tablets. Amory Schools are also considering removing lockers from its campuses.