Dear Parents and Guardians,
It has been brought to our attention that some individuals have an issue with the Jr/Sr High School boy’s bathrooms being permanently opened. Just for everyone’s information, the elementary bathrooms are permanently opened as well. We have had two on-going issues with these particular bathrooms. First, these bathrooms were being vandalized on a regular basis, the clean-up of which was causing long man hours as well as costing the district unnecessary money. Students were blocking up the toilets with paper, paper towels, and other objects, and toilets and urinals were overflowing onto the floor. This was not only causing an unsafe, and unsanitary situation for students entering the bathroom unaware of the water, but also the start of long-term water damage to floors and the ceilings below.
The second issue was vaping. Although students did admit that vaping was occurring often in the bathroom, no one would step up and say who it was. This is also a safety issue, for we have young students using these bathrooms being subject to the vapor and influenced by the students who were vaping. It is also a serious health risk for the students partaking in vaping, as we still do not know the effects that vaping has on developing young people. And it is against New York State Law.
I would also like to address the privacy issue in the boy’s bathroom here at the school. First of all there is no line of sight to the urinals in either bathroom. They are completely out of sight until one walks into the bathroom. Concerning the upstairs bathroom, the stalls are completely out of the line of sight. One cannot see if anyone is using the stalls from the hallway. The downstairs bathroom in the main hall has two stalls. There is a line of sight to the feet of one of the stalls, which is being remedied. All stalls have doors on them which lock from inside. Also, there are no cameras which look into the bathroom at all. We had our SRO and the state police verify all of these facts.
If privacy is an issue, we have other single-person use bathrooms available to all our students. One is in the nurse’s office, two are in the new music wing, two are near the library and we also have another multi-user bathroom in the locker room.
I am sorry if this has caused you any concern or alarm, but my number one responsibility is to keep your children safe while being fiscally responsible to the Germantown Central School District.