The boys at Mahanoy Area High School are shit out of luck. Okay, bad joke, I agree, but it’s a fair way to describe the current predicament there. Seems one of the boys’ bathrooms, the one located by the gymnasium, has been repeatedly vandalized over the last two years causing thousands of dollars’ worth of damage.
Someone has been stuffing rolls of toilet paper and other paper items down into the toilets. Is there one perpetrator or more? Until the culprits are caught, Principal Thomas Smith has instituted a policy that requires any boy needing to use the bathroom (I guess just for number two, right?) to check out a roll of toilet paper and check it back in when they’re finished with it. I don’t know if they measure it before and after or not, although it seems like a pretty good idea considering the stupidity of the boys who are destroying school property.
During the public portion of a recent school board meeting, parent Karen Yedsena spoke regarding the policy, claiming it was embarrassing to the students and should be discontinued for the emotional health of the boys. Whether she was speaking as a representative of other upset parents, or solely on the behalf of her son, I don’t know, but it seems to me that anyone who would be more concerned about junior having to ask permission to go potty than getting to the bottom of serious, maybe criminal, behavior is misdirected in their thinking.
She’s also concerned that the students are not allowed to use the bathroom after the first five minutes of class. Clearly, Ms. Yedsena did not attend Catholic school (in which Robo-bladder is developed by the second grade) or understand that students who have to use the restroom smack-dab in the middle of class usually don’t really have to use the restroom at all.
To be honest, I applaud this principal’s use of measured constraint. He’s been dealing with this problem for years and has not been able to curb the behavior. By all accounts, he has tried other methods and this latest attempt, he states, has “cut down on the destruction.” I’m assuming that no one has been willing to rat anyone out, and that the school doesn’t have the camera system, manpower or money to attack the problem more aggressively. In following some of the comments online about this issue, I’ve read some great ones that are sure to catch the offender. Here’s my suggestion: Set up a camera, hidden of course, and an invisible eye like the one on your garage door that will alert the employee hired specifically for this purpose that someone has entered the bathroom. After the student leaves, check the bathroom. If it’s been trashed, check the tape to discover the offender and then arrest them. That’s right, call the police and file charges. Then charge the parents of the miscreant the cost of the surveillance system.
I know, I know, all kinds of civil liberties violated and there’d be so much blowback that my idea would never be implemented. But it would work. Wouldn’t it be funny if it was Karen Yedsena who ended up writing the check?