Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Where's Chuck Shepherd When You Need Him?

OK, weird thought of the day.

We have an exchange student staying with us. From Brazil. A 16-year-old girl. She’s a sweetheart, mature for her age, no trouble at all.

But due to a series of snafus she’s going to a local private Catholic school. The plan, since she comes from a private Catholic school setup in Brazil, was for her to experience the American Public School system. The crossed wires in the whole proceedings that led to this could take up a couple blog entries by itself; and that’s not the weird stuff. Well, it kind of is, since I’m a bit horrified at the whole Catholic school thing. I have ABSOLUTELY no Catholicism in me. Nada. So this is the last educational option I would have chosen for anyone. Or anyone I cared about. But she’s not horrified, and her family thinks this is the best option left to us, so I’m happy to do what they think is best for her.

Anyway, the weird. The school has a policy prohibiting all girls in the school from using the bathrooms for the duration of the lunch hour (to include the next class period).

This policy has the avowed outcome of preventing bulimia in the bevy of teenaged girls in the school’s care.

The boys are allowed to use the bathroom since, it is reasoned, the guy who yacks up his lunch in order to meet his wrestling weight is not suffering from an incipient mental illness. This is all so just-give-the-priest-some-chastity-pants I can hardly contain myself. Put a cork in it and the icky stuff will stop flowing, right?

I guess this isn’t that far off from school uniforms. Well, yes it is. OK, yeah, WAY off. This seems so... draconian and lacking any spark of psychological savvy.

Is this really reasonable and I just don’t get it?


Derek said...

For all my problems with Catholicism, I have always believed in the general excellence of Catholic school education. But the bathroom thing? That cracks me up. I'd like to have been in the room where this prohibition was dreamed up and approved. I would've liked to have heard the debate.

EDUCATOR: We need to prevent the girls from vomiting in the lav.

ADMINISTRATOR: Why are girls vomiting in the lav?

EDUCATOR: Because they've got this disease called Bolivia. I saw it on Regis and Kelly.

ADMINISTRATOR: Isn't it enough we have a girl from Brazil? Now we've got Bolivians, too? That's it. No lav passes for girls at lunch.

wunelle said...

Yeah, and the prohibition of bathroom use during and after lunch for all of Brazil cannot be far behind.

Jehy said...

I definitely don't think it is "just you," Bil. Without trying to sound like a feminazi, I think this borders on gender (or whatever they're calling it these days) discrimination. Now, I understand that not leting kids use the bathroom during lunch could be seen as merely an attempt to keep the little bastards from sneaking off and trying to burn the school down, (and rightfully so, because when I was middle school-aged, we were all bastards), but this is nothing of the kind. One, this is HIGH SCHOOL, where students are a bit (a BIT, I said) more mature; and two, this is a small (I'm assuming) Catholic School. They can't keep better track of their few students? If they are THAT concerned, get someone to accompany the student to the bathroom where one checks for the sound of heaving.