The Bathroom Issue

The Bathroom Issue

Art is a form of expression. Many people use it to channel their innermost feelings, but some LHS students recently chose to channel it in an improper place: the bathroom stalls at LHS. Right before the holiday break, there was a report of vandalism in the boys’ bathroom in the new Alice Bresnihan Wing. Principal Joseph Rainis said he is “disappointed” that such an act has occurred. He believes that it is “an indication that somehow, perhaps, that individual does not feel like they’re part of the building,” and Rainis “would love to see that change.” 

Administrators were very serious about finding the student/students responsible for the vandalism, so they locked most of the restrooms in the building and left only certain ones open in specific regions of the school, such as the cafeteria. This strategy was not favored by many students due to the long, cumbersome walk they had to take to locate an open restroom. 

Freshman Jorielle Phillips said she “did not like that experience at all.” She further expressed how “it was annoying that these students had caused other students like me the inconvenience of having to find a bathroom and get back to class fast enough so I don’t miss a lot.” She believes that the vandalizers are “ignorant and inconsiderate of their LHS peers.”

At each available restroom, a monitor was seated outside the door with a sign-in and sign-out sheet so that the school could track the students that entered and exited the bathrooms. Jennifer Caracciolo, one of these door monitors, believes that this practice was effective: “It made you think twice before choosing to doodle on the stall or do something wrong because the chances of you getting caught would be pretty high,” she said.

Overall, the new restroom policies were unfavorable for many students, but there was an intentional reason behind them. As Rainis explained, “Closing the stalls made things inconvenient, and it was upsetting, and when we did reopen them, we were able to get information that was useful.” The logic behind this action was to show the students how one wrongdoing can have an impact on everyone. 

The few days of abnormality that LHS had to endure were meant to teach students to respect the building and understand the importance of maintaining its clean, well-kept appearance, not only for current students’ sake but also for future generations. This experience also stood as a reminder for students to report activity that breaks school rules, such as vandalism.