Campus restrooms are lacking in supplies and fail to meet the expectations of students and state laws for privacy and sanitation. The restrooms’ inadequacy leads to uncomfortable restroom visits that could easily be resolved. Regular maintenance and a higher priority on privacy are crucial to make using the restrooms a less harrowing experience.
Campus restrooms’ conditions are a glaring violation of basic health codes, such as the California Education Code 35292.5 which expects school restrooms to be stocked with soap, paper towels, and other necessities “at all times.” The frequency of which the restroom toiletries are refilled is far from “at all times” and closer to seldom, if at all. For instance, soap dispensers have been removed from the walls with no signs of future replacement. This becomes a major health hazard, especially during lunch, since students are unable to wash their hands thoroughly. By not adhering to state laws for basic sanitation, the restrooms essentially become nurseries of filth.
Even though student expectations are not written out, restrooms should also adhere to them to provide students with a decent restroom experience. One of the main student expectations that is not being met is proper privacy. This is especially true in the boys’ restrooms where the absence of partitions between the urinals creates severe awkwardness. Students respond to this by using every other urinal to have some privacy. Since only half of the urinals are in use, the lines for the boys’ restrooms grow tediously long. This problem is most consequential during the strict eight-minute passing period where students attempt to use the restroom quickly to get to their next class on time. Furthermore, the locks for some stalls in the locker room do not work, adding to the discomfort. By not providing simple privacy, the restrooms fail to accommodate the most basic of expectations.
Campus boasts a football field encircled by a quarter-mile track, two baseball fields, and a location that is surrounded by beautiful mission-style structures. The unacceptable condition of the restrooms has no place in a school like this. Worst yet, when other schools come to visit for sports games or other events, they are forced to use the clogged toilets, step on the grimey tiled floors, and wash their hands from a leaky faucet. The restrooms are a humiliating stain on the school’s name.
Some argue that the campus restrooms already serve their basic purpose, so there is no need to spend time and effort to make them better. However, it is cruel to force students to use restrooms of low standards, much less ones that violate state laws. This is not to say that an extravagant amount of money should be spent on improving the restrooms, only enough money to make sure that student expectations are met and state laws are followed. Any time and effort invested into improving the restrooms’ conditions would yield beneficial results.
Immediate changes need to be made to the restrooms, lest their neglected state worsens. The maintenance of the restrooms relies on both the staff, for refilling and cleaning them, and the students, for taking care of them. Therefore, both sides should be educated on their responsibilities to ensure that the restrooms remain clean and sanitary. After education, comes improvements where partitions between urinals are installed, the soap dispensers are replaced, and any other necessary changes to the restrooms are made. The education of the students and staff would allow the improved quality of the newly renovated restrooms to be upheld.