Lock Hypocrisy?


Natalie Shea, Staff Writer

School’s in session at Berkeley Carroll and the students are in class. But there is something missing: very few of the lockers are locked. That is because Mr. Vitalo, Head of School, suggested that students remove locks from their lockers, trusting their personal belongings to be protected by the school community and not by locks. This change is not a rule; it’s merely a suggestion, and some students still have locks on their lockers as there isn’t a consequence for using a lock. However, most of the student body has decided to follow the suggestion.

When asked about the topic, Mr. Vitalo said, “The reason behind it was we trust kids to do so much: take care of themselves, take care of one another, take brave stands when working with people. It seemed silly to put these little locks on pretty insignificant stuff. We can take care of that, and if taking care of books and jackets teaches us to take care of each other that’s a good lesson to learn.”

Some students disagreed: “I don’t actually believe [having] locks will help the community,” said an anonymous ninth grader, who chooses not to use a lock.

“I have assets that I care about that I don’t want to risk losing,” said a ninth grader, who sometimes uses a lock.

In contrast, other students support the new policy. “I like not having my lock on my locker because it makes my life a lot easier,” said Elizabeth Moore, a tenth grader.

Regardless of whether students agree with the locker policy, the majority of students have raised an interesting question: why does the school lock up the computers in the library at the same time that it asks the students not to lock their lockers?

For example, senior Jake Simpson, who does not use a lock, says about the policy, “It’s okay, I guess. I think it’s forcing a sense of community that can’t really be enforced. It’s stupid how the computers in the library are locked, but we can’t lock our lockers.”

“The real question is, why have locks on the computers?” asked Elizabeth Moore.

“I never really use my lock anyway. So I’m indifferent. But I don’t get why we are supposed to trust each other with our personal belongings, but the school does not trust us with computers,” said Nina Katzner, an eleventh grader, when asked how she felt about the lock issue.

“My opinion is it’s great. I think it creates a trusting environment. I think all the motives are correct. I think the fact that they lock the computers in the library, and that we can’t check out computers, sends the complete opposite message,” said senior Will Pigott, who does not use a lock.

When asked about the locked computers, Ms. Hartley-Manieri, the librarian, said, “We changed our laptop circulation policy under special circumstances. The last several months of the 2014-2015 school year laptops frequently went missing from the library workstation. Eight laptops went missing and they never came back. So the decision was to secure the laptops on the counter to ensure that everyone in the community can use the computers.”

At this point, the success of the suggested policy is not clear. However, the student body seems less worried about possible theft, and more worried about the hypocrisy of the new suggestion.