William Maldonado, who is a senior at Mt. Diablo High, sent me the three photos above to illustrate problems with locked restrooms and others that are not sufficiently stocked with supplies at the school.
Here’s what he said about the photos in an email:
“These are the pictures I took. One is of the bathroom with no soap or paper towel fixtures even on the wall. That is of the shop building bathroom, the only bathroom usually available to students. The other pictures are pictures of the stair well in the Academic building where students often urinate because they cannot find a bathroom open or because they are too disgusted by the condition of the bathrooms to actually use them.”
Maldonado was one of several students who spoke to the school board last Monday, complaining about the lack of restrooms, lack of supplies in the few restrooms that are open, and the punishment that Principal Kate McClatchy requires when students are late to class — even if the reason they’re late is that they had to wait for a chance to use a restroom. They must get a tardy pass and pick up trash, which ends up making them even later, Maldonado told the board.
During a phone interview, Maldonado also expressed concerns about McClatchy’s plan to convert the school to an all-academy model. Maldonado has reached the highest rank in the school’s JROTC program. He and other members of JROTC fear that the program might not survive if the school converts to all academies, because students would not have enough options to take JROTC courses. He also said students would not be able to take courses from two different academies — such as woodshop and biotech. This is unfair because it limits their choices, he said.
During previous budget cuts, the school board considered cutting a JROTC program from MDHS or Olympic High. But students from both programs came to the board meetings dressed in their uniforms and talked about how it changed their lives. Teachers and parents also talked about how beneficial JROTC is on both campuses. So far, I have not heard this brought up at a board meeting. But, if the all-academy model would jeopardize the JROTC program, the public and the board should be made aware of that.
Do you think students should have to pick up trash if they are late to class because they were waiting to use the restroom?
Maldonado just sent me this additional photo, which he said was taken by his friend. Here’s what he wrote about it in an email:
“I found this picture on my friends phone and had him Bluetooth it to me. This is the only toilet available in the shop building bathroom.”
When I asked when it was taken, he responded: “This one was taken a couple weeks ago. The photo was time stamped as being taken on 1/17/12/”