Restroom Privacy

This+photo+is+replicable+in+every+boys+restroom

This photo is replicable in every boys restroom

When talking to international students and friends about how schools are different in each country, there are always stand-out topics. From outdoor schools to student freedom, there’s one that tends to stand out more than expected: restroom privacy. The large crack in the door, the foot-tall gap between the door and the ground, and the open entrance doors where passersby can see in on people doing business.
Many DP students have spoken out about their discomfort due to the lack of privacy and the unease of using restroom facilities during high-traffic times, such as passing periods and lunch.

Photo of Nick Schultz (11) towering over the stall barriers in the boys locker room

If we could only afford stall doors that go down an extra foot and hinges that don’t leave inch-wide gaps in the closed door. It’s not only the footing that needs to be increased, but also the height, as this monster of a volleyball player has no problem looking over the stall. More than just the stalls need more privacy; the urinal configuration is an insult to the common sense of using one. With no provided gaps or dividers there is no way for multiple to be used at once without embarrassment.
This lack of privacy is not strictly found in restrooms, but also in the locker rooms, which have open concept showers. These showers have not been functional for what appears to be decades, and for unknown reasons, they have been commandeered into a makeshift storage room for laundry carts, an exercise bike, a cone, and a whiteboard. The lack of working showers makes students who have morning practices go to school sweaty, giving students who may want to rinse off no choice in the matter.

Photo of the boys locker room showers in mid to late September 2022

 

Photo of tampon dispenser on September 20th 2022

Along with this, students drew attention to the demand for menstrual products like tampons and pads in restrooms; currently, every bathroom with a machine sits unfilled and empty, even if filled they require a quarter to be used. In a setting where some students may not have access to menstrual products off campus, providing quality products on campus is required for students’ health and overall well-being. Programs like Aunt Flow have shown promising results by giving budget friendly and quality products to other schools in the SB area, such as Laguna Blanca. Aunt Flow allows students to advocate for better products at their school by providing resources to the school. The administrators then get in contact with Aunt Flow to finalize details and provide the school with improved products. Students should not feel shame for their bodies, and leaving students without products is unfair to students’ right to privacy regarding their health and needs.

Privacy for students should go further than adequate stall doors. The lack of gender-neutral restrooms across campus requires students to either walk across campus or risk their safety by going into a different restroom. Some students uneducated in gender identity may be concerned or confused about this issue, however, gender-neutral restrooms are crucial for the inclusivity of all students.

Many of these issues have been brought to light, and most have simplistic and achievable solutions. Although these complaints may seem redundant to some of the student population, it’s important to take that extra step in making safe spaces for all. Our school strives to create a comfortable environment for all students; having increased privacy in restrooms would allow for a safer and overall more inclusive experience for present and future students.