Holliston High School has had an issue regarding student misbehavior in the restrooms which has resulted in administration locking bathroom doors during the 2014-2015 school year.
The bathrooms (in particular, the boy’s bathrooms) are periodically locked, usually after an incident occurs in the bathrooms, and without warning.
Holliston High School business teacher, Mr.Brian Healy, said that he thinks, “[Administration] locks the bathrooms because they notice there is damage or students are congregating there… They could potentially be unsupervised and that could create danger in the school.”
When asked to elaborate on the kinds of behavior that have been seen in the bathrooms this year, vice principal Ms.Anne Connoni said, “There was vandalism and kids were hanging out.”
Ms. Connoni declined to offer more information when asked to elaborate.
When certain bathrooms are locked, the only accessible bathroom is located nearest the main office in the front of the school.
Mr. Healy, who is occasionally asked by female teachers to inspect the boys bathrooms when they suspect mischief, said, “If there’s a lot of people in the bathroom, they can’t all be using the facilities at the same time. I had one incident that I had to take a group down to the office because they were hiding something from me. I didn’t see it, but I believe [the administration concluded] that one student had a vaporizer.”
When asked what rumors he’s heard about the vandalism, Mr.Healy said, “There’s been a broken mirror, one time there were students that broke a toilet off the foundation, generally things that are completely pointless and cause damage to the building.”
He continued by saying that locking some bathrooms and making students travel across the school encourages bad behavior in other ways.
“I think when they have the ability to take the long route to the bathroom it also allows them to take a long lap around the school before going back to class. I feel like students use the bathroom as an excuse to get out of class, or to meet up with someone.”
Senior Brendan O’Connell believes that locking the bathrooms has not eliminated the misuse. When asked if he thought students practice the same behaviors in the bathrooms they’re allowed to use as they did in the bathrooms that are no longer accessible, he responded, “Yeah, I think that just because there are fewer bathrooms, there’s less opportunity to, but the activity is probably similar.”
As a student who says he does not participate in inappropriate restroom behavior, O’Connell feels that the bathrooms being locked is, “annoying and inconvenient. It’s a disappointment to have to walk over the school.”
Even though he thinks longer walks to the bathrooms may tempt students to stay out of class longer, Mr.Healy believes, “[Teachers] have to put the accountability on the students to want to learn the material in class,” and understands that, “[The administration] wants to provide access to the bathrooms, but not if there is danger. The main concern is…safety.”