The Student News Site of Buckingham Browne & Nichols School

The Vanguard

The Student News Site of Buckingham Browne & Nichols School

The Vanguard

The Student News Site of Buckingham Browne & Nichols School

The Vanguard

    A need for new stairways to accessibility

    Kindness, one of the school’s three pillars, could be better reflected in the diversity of ability of its students and the campus’s accessibility accommodations. There are currently not any students or teachers attending the upper school with physical disabilities; that needs to change. Students need a community that reflects the outside world to evolve into sympathetic and sensitive people.

    It is important that the school creates an environment that does not exclude or deter those with physical disabilities from visiting our campus. It is also important to aid students with injuries that affect their ability to walk upstairs.

    Currently, there are only two elevators and one stair lift. The elevators, which are too often under maintenance, are located on opposite sides of the building, and only located

    in major stairwells. But there are staircases everywhere, such as the science wing, art gallery, math wing, college counseling, and more. Students with physical disabilities or impairments would have to reroute their paths to these places, taking up valuable time and effort, and would be unable to get to the third floor above the math wing.

    There is also a singular stairlift outside the teachers’ lounge which only covers three steps. Although this is helpful for people in wheelchairs, injured students are not able to benefit from this stairlift.

    But elevators and stairlifts aren’t the only things keeping the campus from being a truly accessible place. Many of our doors leading outside are not automatic, making them inaccessible. To fix this, the school could connect the doors with the student IDs, so that scanning an ID would trigger the door to

    open automatically.
    Finally, the campus also lacks ramps to

    exterior entrances. Many of the entrances are on ground level, but a few are above with steps. These entrances, such as the one by the gym, are inaccessible to those with certain physical disabilities. Although one may argue that there are other doors nearby, it would be inconvenient for the person with a physical impairment to travel to those, and therefore these doors are not accommodating.

    The changes are necessary to create a more accessible campus. The school strongly values inclusivity—in gender, race, sexual orientation, and ability—but its campus design inadequately reflects this tenet.

    In order for the school to become the inclusive place it strives to be, it needs to value everyone equally, and that all begins by creating a more accessible campus.

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