The+state+of+school+bathrooms%3A+flushed+expectations

Audrey Gasser (she/they)

The state of school bathrooms: flushed expectations

November 16, 2022

Students must pick their poison when deciding which stall to use in the school bathrooms. (Audrey Gasser (she/they))

From broken toilets to sinks that never stop running, the school bathrooms continue to be a terrible sight to behold. Built in 1965, it’s safe to say that it’s been many years since parts of the school have been updated. However, with plans being completed between 2026 and 2027, Inglemoor is set to be one of the eight selected schools scheduled for partial remodeling.

While senior Muntaha Sohail (she/her) has positively responded to the news of upcoming renovations,  she said that she is not appreciative of how the school district seems to be turning their focus towards the future without addressing the present problems in the bathrooms.

“We’ve been complaining about this so much, they should do it faster,” said Sohail, commenting on the district’s current plan of action. 

Because of coming renovations, principal Adam Desautels (he/him) said the district is hesitant to make large, expensive changes. Therefore, even for small maintenance issues, the process for getting the facilities fixed can be drawn-out for school administrators. According to Desautels, while issues seen as “emergencies” by the school district are usually fixed within 24 hours, many issues with toilets, sinks, plumbing and locks can take from a month to a year to fix. 

“We are constantly reaching out to the district because they have people that they will send out to fix things,” said Desautels. “We’ll put in work orders [online]; if it’s an emergency we’ll call. We’ll follow up and, unfortunately, response time is not really quick, so it’s a lot of us poking and bugging.” 

Since facilities such as broken toilets, sinks and locks are not seen as a priority, many students are becoming impatient waiting for these issues to be fixed. 

“The locks — they’re totally destroyed,” said senior Jeff Storms (he/him). “One of them, you’d expect a wall to get broken from slamming a door or something. [The lock] is bent the other way, like someone took a hammer and banged it until it didn’t work anymore… I think I’m just gonna bring power tools into the restroom and fix the locks myself.” 

I think the toilet seat has leprosy because it’s losing all of its skin.”

— Jeff Storms

Additionally, many problems seen as small inconveniences continue to remain broken or even unusable.

“We can buy more toilet paper, [but] there’s nothing to hold it with,” said Storms.

Senior Ferdeen Poptiya (he/they) said that while the district has other concerns than just the bathrooms, there comes a point where changes need to be made.

“I don’t think being appealing should be the number one job of a bathroom, but man, if your stall is so rusty that I actually consciously avoid it, I think there’s kind of a problem there,” said Popitaya.

With all of the complaints and issues circulating about the bathrooms, Desautels clarified that many of the issues seen with appliances and utilities are not managed or taken care of by the custodial staff. 

“It’s not our custodial team. They do a phenomenal job, but there’s only five of them that cover the entire 24 hour period; usually there’s only one or two custodians here [at a time],” said Desautels. 

Not satisfied with the school’s attempt to prevent large gatherings and substance use in the bathrooms, Sohail has taken a more creative approach to solving this problem on her own. 

“I borrowed my friend’s car keys and started shaking them like an administrator,” said Sohail. “And then I put on my best administrator voice and I was like, ‘I will give you guys one minute to come out of there right now or I will give you all lunch detentions.’ They came out of that bathroom so fast.” 

 Increasing security, fixing vape detectors, and adding bathroom passes are additions made by administration to make sure students are not abusing the bathrooms.  

“We’re just trying to be as present as possible in as many bathrooms as we can,” commented Desautels. 

Directed towards the district, Sohail expressed one final message that she wanted to send across. 

“You could help more,” said Sohail. “You choose not to.”

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About the Contributors
Photo of Arushi Sharma (she/her)
Arushi Sharma (she/her), Co-Editor-in-Chief

Senior Arushi Sharma is Co-Editor-In-Chief of Nordic News for the 2022-2023 school year. She hopes to increase Nordic's engagement in her third year on...

Photo of Audrey Gasser (she/they)
Audrey Gasser (she/they), Reporter

Senior Audrey Gasser is starting her first year on Nordic News as a reporter for the year of 2022-2023. She hopes to strengthen their writing skills and...

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