Phoenix, AZ asked in Education Law for Arizona

Q: My child's highschool locks their bathrooms in class room buildings and not allowed to take their backpacks in bathroom.

I have contacted the asst principal and was told she would discuss this with the principal to have the athletic dept representative call me to inform me of the school's policy. It is not a district policy, only this school's policy. Kids have to go across campus to try to locate a unlocked bathroom and if they are late to class due to this they are tardy. Also, a few teachers giving 4 restroom passes for a quarter (August - December & January - May). They are being denied to go to a closer bathroom as they are locked which is a problem is a child has diarrhea, female menstrual cycles, vomiting, etc. Not mention the health factors of children not being able to have access to the bathrooms across the campus. Students are not allowed to take their backpacks in the restroom which contains personal property and school issued computers. However it is stated in the student handbook that the school / district is not responsible for the loss, damage, or theft of these items.

Related Topics:
1 Lawyer Answer

A: Nothing in your question suggests an illegal restroom policy. There may be undesirable consequences, and some of the policies do not appear to be well-thought out. But nothing indicates an unlawful policy.

While excessive and repeated tardiness can have negative impacts on the learning environment, occasionally being tardy to make an unplanned restroom stop is probably not going to dramatically impact a particular student. If a student has diarrhea or is vomiting, in most cases the student perhaps shouldn't be at school.

I can certainly understand a school not allowing backpacks into a restroom. The student can leave their backpack with a trusted classmate or locked inside their locker when they go to the restroom.

Again, I'm not suggesting these are ideal, carefully crafted policies. They may or may not have legitimate reasons. And you have every right as a parent or student to question the wisdom of any or all of these policies. But they are not unlawful.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.