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Old 02-17-2004, 01:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Bathroom Breaks: Kids in NJ can't go when the need to

I remember when I was in middle school you had 5 minutes between classes to go to the locker and make it to your next class. Somewhere between your morning break and lunch you had to find time to make it to the bathroom. It's been like that for many many years.

It wasn't until I was in college could I just leave in the middle of a lecture to go to the bathroom. You missed some of the lecture you had to find someone to fill you in.

At the office now I can go whenever I want, but there were some jobs that I had to be there until scheduled breaks because that's how the work flowed and others depended on me in the line.

Pee rule is No. 1 gripe at school


Some New Jersey middle school students can't go when they gotta go.
A controversial new pee policy at Lawrence Middle School in Lawrenceville, N.J., is limiting pupils to just 15 bathroom breaks a month.

"It's insane," said parent Lisa Everson, 40. "I just think the administration does not know how to handle children. It's unhealthy, and it's also embarrassing for children. We're furious about all of it."

Seventh-grader Eric Waldron, 13, is worried - he has just four bathroom breaks left for the rest of the month.

"It's stupid," he said. "They say they're doing good for the school, they say it'll teach responsibility and management, but you can't manage your bathroom time. You have to go when you have to go!"

Matthew Gregory, 12, has been drinking and eating less at lunch to avoid using up his passes.

"It's pretty silly," he said. "They make us do things for no reason."

Administrators say the policy was put in place to stem discipline problems that included two bomb threats scrawled on bathroom walls in the fall.

"Of course some kids are upset because kids don't want rules," Principal Nancy Pitcher told the Trenton Times. "Some parents don't understand because they are only getting bits and pieces of the story."

Pitcher noted students may use the bathroom during a 33-minute lunch period. But kids say it's after lunch that their need is greatest.

Originally published on February 17, 2004
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Old 02-17-2004, 01:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I know I'm in the huge majority, but I hardly ever went to the bathroom during school. I'd wait till I got home.

So I say Boo Hoo. It'll strenghten their little bladders. I'm only kidding. A little.
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Old 02-17-2004, 01:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hold on... I gotta go pee.
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Old 02-17-2004, 01:56 PM   #4 (permalink)
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in middle school we were generally only allowed to go to the bathroom if it was an emergency... *shrug* if i eat/drink about the same amount every day i go to the bathroom the same time every day... my body gets used to having to wait... even in middle/elementry school it was like that... very rarely had to leave class to go to the bathroom...

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Old 02-17-2004, 02:52 PM   #5 (permalink)
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When I was in high school smoking and vandalism of the boy's rooms became such a problem they just locked them all. We had no choice but to wait until we got home, or find a girls room that was empty and have someone guard the door for you. Granted I didnt go that much at school anyway, it was still a pain.
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Old 02-17-2004, 02:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Location: Ontario
Bomb threats will be written on the school walls whether you give kids 100 breaks, 15 breaks or just one. So is the solution No bathroom breaks? Teacher escort to the bathroom??

It rediculous, and if I had to go and the teacher wouldn't let me, I would get up and leave without permission. I'd take the consequences over pissing myself in front of my peers any day.
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Old 02-17-2004, 03:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I never went to bathrooms in school. I very rarely had the desire to, and even if I did, I usually waited until I was home to relieve myself.

This policy, however, is silly. Kids should be able to go to the bathroom whenever they need to. They're calling it an attempt to teach time management and responsibility, but I don't see how not allowing them to pee will make them more responsible human beings. However, 15 passes should be enough for most kids.
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Old 02-17-2004, 03:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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That's pretty ridiculous.

I can remember being in first grade, and the teacher being very stingy with the bathroom passes...we'll just say that there were unhappy results for more than a few kids. Few things suck more than having PE class with soaking wet sweatpants.

Also, they need to consider that some people CAN'T hold it. Some people, such as myself, have conditions that make it nearly impossible to wait for too awful long. And saying "But kids with special needs can tell that to their teachers" isn't the way to do it...if anybody honestly remembers gradeschool or hell, any school for that matter, saying "I really need to use the restroom since I have a bladder condition" is almost worst than just pissing yourself.

What really bothers me is the administration saying that kids protest since "they don't want rules"...I was a rule-abiding grade-schooler, and I'd have thought this was ridiculous. Something tells me that the teachers can take a pissbreak as often as possible...or a coffee break (while most won't allow students to have beverages)....or a smoke break (which would land any student--even over 18--a hefty fine and some disciplinary action).
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Old 02-17-2004, 04:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
Location: San Francisco
I am surprised nobody has mentioned the fact that middle school girls are often just beginning their menstural cycles. I recall more than once in junior high where I *had* to run to the restroom.

Granted, being allowed 15 passes per month to use the facilities would cover this problem in most cases, but still.....it seems a bit harsh.

I've also been in situations (school/job/training, etc.) where potty breaks were few and far between, but this school's reasoning seems absurd.
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:21 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Location: Ontario
Originally posted by teriaki
I am surprised nobody has mentioned the fact that middle school girls are often just beginning their menstural cycles. I recall more than once in junior high where I *had* to run to the restroom.
I had thought of that, but I wasn't sure what age people were in "middle school."

Plus I decided I would rather let a women bring that point up

And Majik is right...they may be very few, but some kids CAN"T hold it. I had a friend who would easily get urinary infections if he didn't go when he felt the need.
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Old 02-17-2004, 08:29 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I never had a problem when I was in school.
Washroom breaks were scheduled only a couple hours a part. Go to the washroom before you leave home, should be good to last til the first break that we had at 10am which was our first recess. Lunch started at 11:30 and we had 5 minutes to go to the washroom and then 25 minutes to eat our lunch. After lunch was over at 12 we had time to go to the washroom again before going to recess which ended at 12:30. Last recess started at 2:15 and was another 15 minutes long and we had time to go then as well. 15 Passes for a month would have lasted each person in the class for a couple months. I can see them trying to cut down the times the kids go if they are abusing it and just using it to get out of class and screw around for a couple of minutes.
I m going by my schools in Ont Can. These are state schools which is a big difference. That does suck big time there could be medical reasons that they have to go or for the girls that time of month. I dont see how they can expect the kids to concentrate on class work when they have to go to the washroom.
I couldnt think of anything to put here , but I guess anything would do
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Old 02-17-2004, 09:44 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Shit...at my highschool they gave out 10 passes a quarter. Six were soley for the bathroom, and two each for the office and guidence, all of which could be used for the bathroom as well.

They let people out of the cafeteria at luch to go if they needed to, and you could always go between classes, or if you happened to be in the locker rooms.

Fifteen...I feel deprived.
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Old 02-17-2004, 10:01 PM   #13 (permalink)
Location: Australia, Perth
I drink too much, so i'd be screwed

Our school never had bathroom passes, so we just asked and the teacher let us Seems reasonable....
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Old 02-17-2004, 10:27 PM   #14 (permalink)
* * *
As a practicing professional (that's the term they give us here in grad school) who wants to be a teacher... there is nothing I don't want to deal with more than a kid who pees or poops their pants because of a rule like that. Or worse, vomit... the thing is, learning does not take place when you're just concentrating on your bladder. And some kids really just need to get out of the class for a while to regroup themselves. That kind of policy doesn't focus on student needs at all... bah.
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Old 02-17-2004, 10:58 PM   #15 (permalink)
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So much for drinking water to stay healthy.
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Old 02-17-2004, 11:20 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Just go on the floor a few times... the educators will get the hint after a while. I think saddly the bomb threats et al. need to be filed under kids being kids.
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Old 02-17-2004, 11:26 PM   #17 (permalink)
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It seems like every damn week there's another school pulling some goddamn ridiculous stunt like this. If/when I've kids that are old enough to go to school it sure seems like it is going to take quite an effort to find one that doesn't have the craziest f'ing regulations. Jesus!
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Old 02-17-2004, 11:35 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I'm with averett on this one.

On the thing about never going at school...

the 13 year old has a point, though... you have to go when you have to go.

I think a kid that has no breaks left should get up and pee on the principal. That'll get their attention.
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Old 02-18-2004, 12:32 AM   #19 (permalink)
Whatever happened to just teaching the kids? Yeah, this is great. Lets make the children worry more about being expelled for bringing asprin or going to the bathroom then getting a good education. =/
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Old 02-18-2004, 12:47 AM   #20 (permalink)
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(shaking my head)

I can understand wanting to curb the number of disciplinary problems, but this hardly seems the best way to do it. Some kids might not have a problem with it, but others really might.
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Old 02-18-2004, 09:23 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Never had anything like that in my HS. If we had I would have shown the Admins just what they could do with their 15 passes a month by using the carpet in the office rather than the bathroom.
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Old 02-18-2004, 10:02 AM   #22 (permalink)
Location: Outside Providence
My high school auto teacher had a policy similair tot his. i pissed in the sink.
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Old 02-18-2004, 10:33 AM   #23 (permalink)
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that is ridiculous, i could understand being tight on bathroom priveledges, if you had a problem with individual children, but them to give you 14 per month is stupid.

Is it 14 'out of class' passes? canyou still go between classes and not have it deducted from your 14?

I, personally, would hook a tube up to myself, running discreetly down and out out at the bottom of my shoe, and when i was by the Administration office, i would let it flow.
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Old 02-18-2004, 10:34 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Our teachers were especially stingy with the hall passes when I was in jr. high and even more so to the kids they didn't like.

I once had to use the bathroom during Algebra. When I stood up I was promptly dressed down and told to sit and hold it. This kind of chafed a little as I really had to go.

I told her since I wasn't allowed to go to the bathroom and I sure as hell wasn't going to go in my pants maybe it would be alright if I whipped it out and pissed in the corner instead.

I went to the bathroom.

This kind of shit just irritates the crap out of me. Teenagers already have countless other things to deal with and are getting it stuck to them from countless angles by countless people and they want to impose regulations on bathroom breaks?!?!

Maybe schools should focus on reorganizing after school programs or reinstating the arts and music programs before they focus on when and how many times my kid can take a piss.
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Old 02-18-2004, 10:37 AM   #25 (permalink)
Agreed guthmund. The whole thing needs an overhaul.
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Old 02-18-2004, 11:00 AM   #26 (permalink)
Location: Houston TX
I'd just use my bathroom breaks... and when I was out. lol I'd use the trashcan in the front of the class in protest...

and believe me I would.... public school.. classroom or not.. if I have to piss.. and I can't leave... I'll piss right there on the floor.. I don't care.. its natural get over it .. let me go to the bathroom and piss...
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Old 02-19-2004, 12:16 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Why not just go inbetween classes? Doesn't make scene...
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bathroom, breaks, kids

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