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Game of Thrones: CTK New Bathroom Policy Sparks Tension

Game+of+Thrones%3A++CTK+New+Bathroom+Policy+Sparks+Tension

Let’s set the scene:  it’s 10:45 am, you’re in your advisory up on the 3rd floor, and you need to run to the bathroom before lunch.  Perfect timing, right?  You’re not interrupting class time, you get to wash your hands before lunch.  It’s a win-win.  Or is it?  Not so much when you find the bathroom doors locked on both the 3rd and 2nd floor.  Now, what would be a 5 minute round-trip balloons to 10 minutes as you venture down to the 1st floor bathrooms, wait in the growing line, and then make the climb the stairs back up to your advisory.

On October 12th, the Dean shared the new bathroom policies and it has certainly stirred opinions throughout the student body. I would like to provide the perspective of the students who have to follow this rule and also provide insights from the Dean as well.

As a student, there are multiple problems that could arise with the bathroom being locked on the 2nd and 3rd floor. We only have a 5 minute passing period where we can use the bathroom or we have to wait 5 minutes at the beginning of class to get a pass and then go use the bathroom. Having only one bathroom to serve the entire student-population, even for specific times during the day, places undue burden on students with bathroom needs.  Many students feel the advisory time to be their best opportunity to take care of bathroom needs without interrupting instructional time or reducing lunch time.  

With that, I asked my classmate for the student perspective on the bathroom situation.  Junior,  Je’Nae, shared “I disagree with this rule because it’s difficult enough for students to maneuver through crowded hallways from end to end, and now we’re faced with getting multiple floors just to use the restroom.” 

From a staff perspective this rule makes it more efficient to know where students are located during high-traffic periods.  If there was an emergency, students all know where the 1st floor bathrooms are located and staff can get to them quickly.  This new policy also limits students who are wandering around, which can be a problem at any school. 

With that, I was able to ask our Dean of Students, Dean Whittlesey, about the reasons why the rule was put in place and what he hopes he’ll achieve from this bathroom rule. “The 2nd and 3rd floor restrooms are locked during 4th and 5th periods because that’s when lunch and advisory take place, which is a time where students tend to roam, ” Whittlesey explained. “Closing the 2nd and 3rd floor restrooms during lunch and advisory periods, in addition to other rules and protocols, assist in our ability to locate students more efficiently, discourage prolonged restroom breaks, and ensure that students are present in advisory.”

Screenshot of the new bathroom policy

On one side, we have school staff working to ensure all students are safe, accounted for, and where they are supposed to be.  On the other side, we have good students – who have no intention of getting into trouble – who just need to use the bathroom closest to them, wherever they are in the school.  If all security resources are needed in the lunchroom during these periods, perhaps the compromise could be temporary positioning of alternate staff supervision so we can keep 2nd and 3rd floor bathrooms accessible for all students at all times.

As with any new policy, it will certainly be reviewed and determined if it is effective.  We remain hopeful the actions of a few misbehaving students don’t add more stress to the rest of the students who follow the rules.

 

 

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