Bad Bathroom Behavior

Vandalism Leads to Closing Bathrooms

Avreigh Bickford, TJ Janiak, and Tessa Waites

In recent weeks, a rise in vandalism in some bathrooms across campus has left students, teachers and administrators disappointed and frustrated.  Many are puzzled as to why this bathroom behavior is occurring. Is it frustration, boredom or vindictiveness?

Several incidents of bad behavior in the bathrooms in the Arts Building required the administrators to close some bathrooms for several days. When asked to describe the types of vandalism, administrators declined to give any details.

While administrators try to limit the chance of vandalism occurring throughout the school by “more vigilant checks and limiting bathroom usage,” they alone cannot prevent incidents of bad behavior in the bathroom.

One way of preventing vandalism is bathroom checks between and during class periods. In the English building, teachers have volunteered to check bathrooms at different points of the day to minimize the chance of further acts of vandalism. 

Another way to combat bad bathroom behavior is for students to report acts of vandalism to the administration. In fact, administrators hope to implement new “anonymous reporting forms.”Associate Dean Mr. Jay Gagnon believes that these reporting forms can be an effective alternative to students who wish to report an issue on campus without facing potential scrutiny from students involved. In the coming weeks, the bright green forms will be placed around the school with a QR code to scan and will have a list of administrators, along with their emails. 

Gagnon also emphasized the potential for a “see something, say something approach” in which students are given the chance to report acts of vandalism under the protection of anonymity through the reporting forms.

Mr. Gagnon explained that “it really stinks for the custodians; they do a great job making this as clean of a place as they can. It’s just super disrespectful” what some students are doing in the bathrooms.

For those students who have been caught vandalizing the bathrooms, the administration has relied on restorative practices rather than the traditional suspension for bad behavior. In the case of those who have vandalized, the students help to clean up the bathrooms and their mess.

According to Gagnon, this approach has had some meaningful results. 

“When the students stick after and help out around,” said Gagnon, “they get a view of, okay, this isn’t just a silly joke. This is impacting the whole school community.”

These increased efforts of vigilance come with the goal of discouraging destruction of school property. The school community  needs to realize the motto “Courtesy, Respect and Responsibility” are not just words but long held values that must be demonstrated by every person’s behavior.