Vape Detectors added in School Bathrooms.


Photo by Damien Sharp

An example of the email sent to staff when a detector goes off.

Damien Sharp, Reporter

Over the summer before the 2022-2023 school year, Edgewood High School added a vape detector to each student bathroom. The Edgewood High administration decided to add these detectors after a sudden increase in the number of students vaping in the bathrooms.

At the end of the 2021-2022 school year, Edgewood High School was filled with a vaping problem that occupied the student bathrooms and school grounds. The staff decided the best option was to add the vape detectors. The staff had looked into them before this year but did not have the funding for them.  After applying for and receiving a grant from the state of Ohio Department of Public Safety, Edgewood was able to add the detectors, according to Principal Geygan.

The number of students vaping in the bathrooms has slowly decreased since the detectors were added. “There was a lot at first, around 100 a week, now it has gone down slowly to about 50,” said school resource officer Deputy Mollie Johnson. The detectors do more than just help the administration figure out who’s vaping. “It shows up vaping, THC, loud noises, or tampering with the detectors,” said Deputy Johnson. The school administration gets an email when the detectors go off. There is a value between zero and one hundred based on how much smoke or noise is going on in that bathroom. If a student is caught when a detector goes off and they have a tobacco vape pen and this is their first offense the student will receive 3 days out of school suspension. The second time a student is caught they will receive 5 days out-of-school suspension, and the third time a student is caught with a tobacco vape pen they will receive a 10-day suspension and a recommendation for expulsion. If a student is caught with a THC vape pen it is an automatic 10-day suspension and recommendation for expulsion.

Senior Mason Green has had his own experiences with the detectors in the bathrooms. One time Mason was using the restroom when a group of students walked into the bathroom, they started to vape then a green light on the vape detectors turned on signifying that the detector reported that time and bathroom to staff. Mason also had a different experience with the detectors. “I was in the stall and somebody came in the bathroom and started making a bunch of loud noises and banging on the stalls and the sinks, Then the detectors went off and kept saying security breach,” said Mason.

 “Vaping is not only a problem here at Edgewood it is a problem around Ohio and any student with an addiction should seek help.” Said Principal Geygan.