[Staff Editorial] Potty passes need daily deep cleaning


Every teacher on campus was given a red metal bathroom pass this year and students are required to carry it when going to and from the bathroom.


This year’s bathroom passes are a new level of gross. The idea that the same pass is brought into the most disgusting place in schools is beyond disturbing.

The idea of a reusable bathroom pass is good. In the past, teachers wrote on a separate piece of paper any time someone had to use the bathroom during class. It was an inconvenience to both teachers and students alike.
Ever since COVID, people have a new awareness of the spread of germs. We have been told how many germs there are from just one cough or one sneeze.

The levels of bacteria that live in a place like a bathroom are concerning. Of course, there is nothing to be done about the foul nature of the bathroom; however taking the same pass into the room multiple times a day is unnecessary
The situation is made worse when there are students who admit to never washing their hands after using the bathroom. So now we have the bacteria that just floats around the room accumulating onto these passes, combined with the direct contact of unwashed hands when they head back to class. It is very difficult not to think of how much harmful bacteria we are touching when we pick up that pass. The rapid spread of the flu this season on campus and across the country makes this issue urgent.

Ideally, the passes become fazed out. Last year, some teachers gave students a Post-It note to stick to their ID badges when they were in the hall with permission. Surely, a new disposable option could be created and used schoolwide.

Another option is for the pass to be cleaned daily, even if it’s just a light scrubbing from a disinfectant wipe. The idea that 12 weeks of bacteria and other germs are left on that pass is disgusting, and we need to at least clean them.

Let’s not pretend that the passes will ever be perfectly clean. This would require 100 percent hand washing by all students each time they go to and from the bathroom. However, it would at least be a start to progress if more students washed their hands and we create a plan to regularly clean the actual passes.