Consequences of One, Affects All


Locked E Building Girls’ Bathroom. | Photographed by Ellery Juarez

Students enjoy the blue skies while they still can and all is seemingly well at the Preuss School UC San Diego, until a problem erupts. Students who need to use the restroom find themselves pulling and yanking on locked restroom doors. Once they realize that the door will never open, they begin to seek out the next available restroom. Students pull and yank doors until, finally, they find only one restroom door open.

Students from the Preuss School UC San Diego have been stunned to find few restrooms open because some of their peers have been committing acts of vandalism in the school bathrooms. This includes damage to the school’s plumbing due to students shoving apples and t-shirts down the school toilets. These acts were most-likely inspired by a viral Tik Tok trend called Devious Licks. Devious Licks encourages students to disrupt their school environment by stealing campus property, but this trend opens the door for bad behavior.

From October 18th-October 22nd, A building restrooms were the only lavatories available to both middle and highschool students.

Vice Principal Nelika-Fai Watson clarified, “Teachers were told that the restrooms were closed and to send students to the restrooms in the A building with a pass.”

Rene Elejorde (‘22) confirms, “I asked Ms. Petraglia to use the restroom, but when I got there Mr. Caesar was there and asked me if I had a pass. I didn’t know I needed one so I had to go back to class to get a pass.”

As of October 25th, A building and E building restrooms are now available to all students. Not only that, but this challenges the authority of the Preuss administration. The Preuss School UC San Diego 2020-2021 profile claims that there were 838 students enrolled at Preuss last school year.

According to the California Department of Education, the 2013 and 2026 California Plumbing Code includes details regarding the number of toilets/urinals and lavatories necessary in a school establishment based on a number of students. For males, one toilet is necessary per 50 students, one urinal is necessary per 100 students, and one lavatory is necessary for 40 students. For females, one toilet is necessary for 30 students and one lavatory is necessary for 40 students. In addition, it is a recommendation that the locations of the restrooms are distributed throughout the campus for easy access.

Vice Principal Watson acknowledges that the school may be in violation of the California Plumbing Code, but the circumstances are beyond administration’s control. She addressed, “Unfortunately, if it is so, we will continue to be [in violation of the California Plumbing Code] if the toilets are made unusable by acts of vandalism.”

As of November 2nd all restrooms are repaired, but Ms. Watson hopes that administration will not have to close any more restrooms due to mistreatment. Many Preuss students feel the same way because, unfortunately, this issue affects them as well.

Ruben Gonzalez Abraham (‘27) shared, “The bathrooms are always full and one time I really had to go, but I didn’t want to be late to class so I just didn’t go.”

Students can only hope that others will stop vandalizing the school restrooms so that they will no longer have to be limited to using two restrooms.