Facility vandalism locks bathrooms

Administration responds to slow repairs


Grace Farley

A destroyed sink placed in one of the toilets of the boys' bathroom in the B3 hallway March 28. According to Meyers, the district is working on various other projects, which has slowed the repair process for vandalism in the high school bathrooms.

Dani Orloff and Abby Intveld

As sophomore Cal Stokes walks from class to class, he said passing time is not enough time for going to the restroom.

“I can end up being late for class and being marked tardy because I have to use the bathroom that’s in a different hallway,” Stokes said.

According to Principal Scott Meyers, numerous bathrooms have been closed throughout the school due to vandalism that has occurred.

“I can safely say that we are not closing bathrooms, and I’ve said this a couple of different times throughout the year, because of concerns about chemical use or vaping,” Meyers said. “Right now the bathrooms that are closed are from ceilings being destroyed, sinks being destroyed, and so it’s a pretty frustrating situation for all of us.”

According to Meyers, the administration has not had to address vandalism to this extent in many years.

“In previous years we may have a soap dispenser, paper towel dispenser that got knocked loose. And so it could be accidental, it could be intentional,” Meyers said. “This year it seems more so, and I’m not really sure what the motivation is. We would love a little more information because it’s frustrating.”

Meyers said the administration’s practice is to not take a bathroom away if students are using it inappropriately because they recognize the greater need of using a restroom that’s present there.

Despite this practice, due to the vandalism, bathrooms have been locked. Stokes said he is frustrated at the lack of restrooms available to students.

“I think it’s ridiculous because in most scenarios, it is two bathrooms for around 700 dudes at our school,” Stokes said. “Now I don’t know what the situation is for girls’ bathrooms being closed but I think it’s ridiculous.”

Meyers said he has been in contact with grade level coordinators and teachers about the bathroom incidents but it has been difficult to determine who committed the acts.

“If seven people go into a bathroom and most everybody’s like, I’m not sure I just went in there to use the bathroom, then sometimes we don’t get very far figuring out exactly what had happened,” Meyers said. “We usually get with three or four students and then we rely on some honesty amongst the people involved and sometimes that goes well.”

Stokes said he finds the current renovations fail to address the issues within the high school building.

“I just think it’s a little frustrating that the school can afford to redo the entire locker rooms and the district offices but they can’t afford to get a couple dudes bathrooms opening up again,” Stokes said.

According to Meyers, the repairs are taking longer than in the past because there are a lot of resources in the district right now working on different projects.

“I as a principal keep asking for them to be repaired as quickly as possible. The pressure that’s put back on me that I want to put back on students is the more that it’s damaged though the last successful it’s going to be,” Meyers said.

Meyers said he urges students to move past feeling it is not their business or fears of telling on their peers.

“It’s our right to have a nice school and in bathrooms we need help from people to let us know what they’re seeing and what they notice. I believe it’s the acts of very few, but it’s having a large impact on us,” Meyers said. “We’re not going to give up. We’ll keep working on that. But we need, I think we need to embrace it as a school community.”