District Hosts Listening Session for Gender Neutral Restroom Capital Bond Project Design

Posted by West Linn-Wilsonville on 11/10/2020 10:00:00 AM

 The West Linn-Wilsonville School District hosted a listening session regarding gender neutral restroom design for Capital Bond construction projects on November 17. The video recording of the listening session can be found below alongside the presentation and an online Google Form if community members would like to provide further feedback.

As a reminder, gender neutral restroom design are for select Capital Bond projects as part of the bond program. All schools, including newly constructed schools, will continue to have restroom options for all students, including traditional gender-assigned restrooms.

November 17 Listening Session Video Recording

November 17 Listening Session Presentation

Provide us with feedback through this online Google Form

As the West Linn-Wilsonville district staff and the Capital Bond team prepare to work with architects on remodeling and rebuilding plans for the various projects, restrooms will be one of the areas where some adjustments will be made. This includes adding some gender-neutral, single occupancy stalls in addition to the gender-assigned stalls already present in our schools. THese will not replace all gender-assigned restrooms, and all options will remain available to students at all schools.

A growing number of school-age children in the U.S., and in our district, indicate a preference for more privacy in restrooms because of medical, social-emotional or mental health needs. Using restrooms in ways that provide similar options for all students so groups don’t feel singled out is associated with positive school climate. The overall accessibility and aesthetics of restrooms matter significantly and students report avoiding using bathrooms during the school day based on these factors.

We are at the beginning of this design process. Nothing has been set yet. This is an iterative process. During the Listening Session, district staff will present the background for this decision along with samples of gender-neutral, single occupancy restroom designs for participants to ask questions, make suggestions and share thoughts. We have already held several student focus group sessions on this topic. Comments and suggestions from our students, staff and community will help guide us through the design process and as we better understand how to keep our school buildings, including restrooms, safe and welcoming for all.