Senate committee passes bill regarding restroom privileges for students

Politics - Government

You may have heard from your children that they weren’t allowed to use the bathroom at school because they already used their bathroom privileges. In some cases, privileges like recess or rest time are taken away from students using the bathroom multiple times. 

One state lawmaker doesn’t think that’s fair. 

Several people stood up at the committee meeting Wednesday morning saying their siblings or kids were limited on how many times they could use the bathroom in class. Sometimes the child couldn’t hold it. 

“He would be free to use the restroom when he needs to and it also gives students self-dignity,” one woman said. 

“I wrote a note to his teacher, explaining he had bladder spasms and that he needed to go. The next day he didn’t come home wet and I asked him if he was able to go and he said yes but that he lost recess time,” another parent said. 

Senate Bill 26, sponsored by Democrat Michael Padilla, would basically allow kids to use the restroom when they need to go without any backlash. 

Sen. Padilla says some schools limit a student’s number of trips to the restroom and in some cases punish the students, like by taking away recess. 

“This bill basically does two things. One, it respects the authority of the teacher, and two, it blends that with a medical reason — if there’s a real issue why the child may need to use the restroom — and they should not feel ashamed or feel bad that they need to go to the restroom more than their peers do,” Sen. Padilla said. 

The senator says the Department of Education would set a clear line of rules for bathroom policies with no retribution.

There was some pushback on this bill with Senate Republicans. They claim this would give kids an opportunity to “rig the system” and claim they need to use the bathroom just to get out of class and that this is another way for the state to mandate how teachers operate their classrooms. 

This bill was passed at the Senate Education Committee. All of the Senate Education Committee Republicans voted “no.” 

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