10-Minute Bathroom Policy: The Full Story


photo Tiago Neves

A poster outside the second floor bathrooms to remind students of the current bathroom policy.

The current bathroom policy prohibits students from using the bathroom the first and last ten minutes of each period, which amounts to half of the school day.

Some students are disgruntled with these rules. Addison Jones, 11th grade, complained that this rule is “dumb and wastes time.”

Students have stories of how strict certain teachers are with the policy. An anonymous female student said she was menstruating and needed to use the bathroom since it’s nearly half an hour between the times you can use the bathroom. It was an emergency that she had been waiting to resolve. She made the hall monitor aware of this and the hall monitor said girls use that excuse all the time. This student had to go back home and miss three periods of the day to change.

Many teachers support the policy because it keeps students in the classroom. And when it comes to being able to use the bathroom when students genuinely need it, the staff usually allow it.

The problem lies within the people who feel strongly about this on both sides:
The staff have something to lose by getting rid of this rule. Assistant Principal Derosa said, “The hall monitor has to have time to lock the bathroom then get to their class. So it has to be locked for a certain amount of time before the period starts.”

This policy means more flexibility for the staff between classes. So does this mean just the hall monitors agree with this rule?

No, hall monitors feel the same way as the rest of the staff. A survey sent to all staff found that nearly one-third (eight out of 27) teachers do not support the rule and three of the eight are hall monitors. And nine hall monitors answered the survey making it the same one third percentage as the rest of the staff.

Still some students are roaming the halls during class time when teachers think they are using the bathroom.

Mr. Suriel stated that “there are a lot of kids without passes roaming the halls.”

Most students don’t care about the issue or are in opposition of the policy.

The school administrators are in support of the rule and getting rid of it seems unlikely. But reducing the ten-minute time restriction may be a great compromise that both students and staff can get behind.