Opinion: Closing girls bathrooms was not the right response to vandalism

Almost every girls’ restroom on the first and second floors of Upper Campus have been closed for weeks at a time, causing major inconvenience for students


Mackenzie Sroka

Vandalism has closed the bathrooms at both campuses all year long, but some bathrooms have been closed for too long, especially girls bathrooms, inconveniencing students who are trying take bathroom breaks between classes.

Bee Myers, Staff Writer

A female student at MCHS scrambles during their five minute passing period. She wanted to use the bathroom, but every one she had tried on the first and second floor were closed. The only way she can use the bathroom is to go up to the third floor, but that would mean being late to class and risking a tardy. All of this due to girls bathrooms being closed. Even if there was a vandalism issue at MCHS that is not an excuse to make female students late to class just for needing to use the bathroom. 

Many students at the Upper Campus that use the girls room have been complaining about their bathrooms always being closed, but never the guys bathrooms. One of the reasons MCHS closed certain bathrooms for so long was due to vandalism in the restrooms — and even though it was primarily in the girls’ rooms — it didn’t stop there. Although some minor vandalism is normal for any public restroom, no one really understands why there was a random influx of inappropriate drawings and such in the school bathrooms — especially after the “devious lick challenge” had just died down. 

Some of the girls restrooms that have finally been opened recently still have a good amount of residual vandalism, so it really makes students wonder what they doing to the bathrooms that they needed to be closed for that long. This question also still remains for the girls’ room on the first floor across from the band room on the first floor that has been closed all year. There is simply not enough time during the passing period, and no one wants to be late to class or miss anything.

Although there were signs put all around Upper Campus’s bathrooms after an influx of vandalism to let it be known that students should take pride in our school and point out the obvious to not vandalize the bathrooms. It didn’t seem as though there was vandalism in as large of amounts as one stall in particular on the second floor. A simple solution to this issue was to just close that one stall — or any stall with said vandalism in it — and not the entire bathroom. There are drawings and such in every single bathroom if you look hard enough, so it doesn’t seem right. Closing off entire bathrooms left people scrambling to find a bathroom they could use during one five minute passing period and still get to class on time. 

It’s not only the fact that entire bathrooms were closed that is a problem, but also the amount of time they were closed for. Some of them were closed for upwards to a month. Students were not given any reason why besides vandalism, but that cannot be the only reason, can it? If that were the case, janitors could’ve easily cleaned the walls or even painted over it. It feels as though it were a punishment to all students that use the girls’ rooms. 

There is also no way that the boys rooms had absolutely zero vandalism, so there’s a factor of unfairness here as well. It’s not only unfair to the students who had no part in this act, but also -again- inconvenient and time-wasting on the students and even staffs’ behalves. 

Some may say, “If they didn’t close the bathrooms, people would just continue to vandalize them since there was no punishment,” however, this wouldn’t make sense in the way that it was most likely not even a handful of students in the entire school who were doing this. Another thing some might say is it was beneficial for more than just avoiding vandalism, because it could also avoid the epidemic of students hiding in the bathrooms to skip class, drug usage in the bathrooms, and so on, but students who do those things do not care and will find a way regardless, so it’s still just as unfair to the students who use bathrooms for their intended purpose.

In the end, more students complained than saw it as a lesson, as vandalism is still something that is, and will probably continue to happen because these are teenagers we’re talking about. We just didn’t take the right measures to handle this situation correctly in order to still be able to accommodate students’ basic rights and needs.