Some Maine Schools Keep Bathroom Doors Open to Cut Down on Trouble
School bathrooms have always been a source of where some bad things happen, because it's behind closed doors and away from teachers eyes...but that's changing.
In Maine, schools are trying to find that balance between privacy and stopping bad behavior. The Portland Press Herald reports that one of the doors to a boys bathroom in the Lewiston High School, is opened by a chain attached to the wall. No one can see inside a stall, but you can see inside the common area and hear if anyone needs help. The biggest problem schools are trying to prevent is vaping. It used to be smoking, but now it's the electronic cigarette.
Some students in the Lewiston High School aren't comfortable with the new situation and one sophomore has even started a petition to get the door shut.
There's not one sweeping policy for all schools, and they all handle it differently. The new Edward Little School will have no doors. Think airport bathroom - you have a little maze before you get to the stalls.
The new Robert V. Connors Elementary School in Lewiston has the 'airport' entry. They also spent more money for 80 individual restrooms, almost all of them inside or next to a classroom. They were more expensive to build and maintain, but the superintendent thinks it was money well spent.
The battle between privacy and keeping keeps from doing what they aren't supposed to be is tough. Is keeping the door open the right solution?