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Students navigate Classroom Village bathrooms

Students+wait+in+line+at+a+new+bathrooms+in+the+Classroom+Village.+There+are+three+restrooms+available+for+students+in+the+village%2C+including+an+all-gender+bathroom.
Students wait in line at a new bathrooms in the Classroom Village. There are three restrooms available for students in the village, including an all-gender bathroom.

Students wait in line at a new bathrooms in the Classroom Village. There are three restrooms available for students in the village, including an all-gender bathroom.

Photo by Grace Dieveney

Photo by Grace Dieveney

Students wait in line at a new bathrooms in the Classroom Village. There are three restrooms available for students in the village, including an all-gender bathroom.

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Imagine going to the bathroom during a busy school day to be greeted by a long line of students, crowding around sinks and changing for fitness. This is an experience students have had in the new Classroom Village.

Due to Archer Forward construction, multiple bathrooms, which were located in the former North Wing, were torn down. To replace those, the new village now includes two female bathrooms with five stalls in each and one all-gender bathroom.

“There really are not much [fewer] stalls than they were before,” Dean of Students Jenn Babin said. “They were just much more spread out, so it was easier to find one on your way to a class, whereas now, they are concentrated in the library and the village.”

Some students said that they appreciate the cleanliness of the new bathrooms, but others stated that the decrease of access to bathrooms has had a negative impact on their day-to-day experiences.

“The bathrooms are not that big, but they are definitely clean,” Cat Cajrati Crivelli Mesmer Nobili ’21 said. “There are two [bathrooms], so it is enough space at most times.”

Students also raised concerns over lack of space when changing for fitness classes.

“It is annoying when kids change in the stalls because people who actually need to go to the bathroom can’t,” Olivia Jarve ’22 said.

A few students have also reported getting stuck in the individual bathroom stalls. 

“When I got locked in the bathroom, I could get out by crawling under the door, but it would be more sanitary for the locks to be occasionally oiled for easier accessibility,” Rio Hundley ’21 said.

Teachers have also expressed concern over the lack of bathroom accessibility near their classrooms.

“The bathrooms being far away from my classroom can be frustrating,” physics teacher Lauren DiSanza said.

The closest bathroom to the upstairs science hallway, where DiSanza’s classroom is, is the visitor’s bathroom. This is 117 steps away according to an iPhone pedometer.

After questions and concerns expressed by students and staff about the bathrooms, the administration has met to brainstorm short and long-term solutions.

“As things are coming up, we are figuring out what we can do to make everyone as comfortable and as at home as possible,” Babin said. 

According to Babin, students are now allowed to use the all-gender bathroom in the art hallway and the visitors-only bathroom after 3 p.m. The administration is also working to make sure that students are not changing in the bathrooms stalls in order to improve traffic.

The administration says they are open to feedback and suggestions for the bathrooms and Classroom Village as a whole.

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