What do you do when you're at school and you start your period? Well, at Asheville Middle, first you would probably go around asking your friends, hoping they have a spare tampon. What do you do when they don't?
Many girls in middle school start or already have their periods. A lot of girls aren't prepared for when it happens. Most girls have to ask their teachers for supplies, which every girl is told they will or should have in their classrooms at all times. Will they, though? Should teachers even be responsible for purchasing and providing feminine products for students? If it is a general rule established by schools that teachers are to have products on deck for students at all times, then why don't the schools provide them themselves. Expenses add up when female teachers are having to buy tampons and pads for themselves as well as their students, so should they be responsible?
Take into consideration male teachers as well, do male teachers even consider the rule of providing feminine products for their female students? Or do they just expect their female coworkers to be responsible for tampons and pads? At Asheville middle there is a team that is majority male teachers, and the girls that I spoke to aren't generally comfortable with asking their adult male teachers for a tampon or a pad. This opens up a whole other question of should there be a dispenser of products in the girls bathrooms? “I'd rather carry quarters around in school than tampons and pads.” says Callie Judson, an eighth grade girl. The reason for this is that they are less bulky, and call less attention to the student carrying them.
At the end of the day, every girl has to deal with their period once a month. There would be a lot of change that could be made in order to make things easier for girls when it comes. For now, girls have to continue to ask their teachers for products if they aren't prepared, or struggle to make it to class on time after asking their friends.
Story by Aislinn Nash