As students and faculty are all aware, Leesville Road High School is still suffering from students vaping in the bathroom this year. Vape censors were an issue during the 2022-2023 school year, and we are facing the same problems this year.
The fire alarms can detect whenever students are vaping in the bathrooms.
Across the main building and the Murphy building, many of the bathrooms have not been open since last year, which has led to fewer false alarms. They were closed last year by former principal, Mr. Ian Solomon.
“They´re really bothersome, like sometimes it will be in like rainy days,” said Richard Bui, senior.
Bui also believes that the vape drills will not stop this year.
It’s hard for students like Sydney Cecil to get their work done. “Honestly, it’s really annoying because it will always be on the days that I really want to do my work, so I´ll go into class really motivated and then there will be a fire drill, and then I won’t do my work.” said Cecil, senior.
When asked if the bathrooms will ever open back up this year, Cecil said, “No, I don’t know if they ever will honestly.”
Mrs. Jacobs has said through the intercom that there will be punishments if students get caught vaping such as having to pay a fine.
Mr. Kelley, assistant principal, said, “There is a fine that is associated everytime that the firefighters show up. The more times they show up, the higher the fine becomes.”
Other than closing some of the bathrooms around the schools, patrolling also has increased by the restrooms. Teachers and administrators are outside the restrooms, monitoring students going in and out of the bathrooms.
“Anytime an actual fire drill goes off, it does alert us immediately which restroom the censor was activated in,” said Mr. Kelley.
“So we do investigate that area by checking cameras, talking with folks that were in and around the area, and thankfully with the cooperation of both staff, students, and being able to use our camera system, we have caught and been able to identify several of the students that were responsible for activating the sensors,” said Mr. Kelley.
If the staff is able to identify the students, the consequences may result in a suspension, paying the fine depending on the fee that is coming in from the fire department, a mandatory meeting with the student and their parent(s), and possible ALC (Area Learning Center) time.
According to Mr. Kelley, the staff was hoping that they could get to a point where more restrooms could be open at the beginning of the year, but alarms started going off so unfortunately the restrooms will continue to be closed and there was no discussion about reopening the bathrooms.