Vape Detectors: A Solution to Bathroom Vaping in Lewiston Public Schools

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Discover how Lewiston Public Schools plans to tackle bathroom vaping with innovative vape detectors. Explore the technologies, funding challenges, and dedication to a safer school environment.

In the bustling world of education, schools continually strive to create a safe and conducive learning environment for their students. However, one modern challenge that has emerged in recent years is the use of e-cigarettes, particularly among adolescents. The Superintendent of Lewiston public schools, Jake Langlais, has taken notice of a concerning issue – students reporting long wait times for bathrooms due to others vaping in stalls. To address this problem and curb the use of e-cigarettes by kids, Langlais is considering an innovative approach: installing vape detectors in the bathrooms of both middle and high schools. In this article, we delve into the details of this potential solution and explore the technologies being considered, while also discussing the financial challenges and the search for funding through grants.

Addressing the Vaping Problem

Vaping has become a growing concern among school administrators, parents, and communities. Not only does it pose health risks to students, but it also disrupts the school environment. Students have expressed their frustration with the excessive wait times for bathrooms, which are attributed to peers vaping in the stalls. This behavior not only raises health and safety concerns but also negatively impacts the learning experience of other students.

The Role of Vape Detectors

To combat the rising prevalence of vaping in school bathrooms, Superintendent Jake Langlais is exploring the implementation of vape detectors. These detectors, equipped with advanced technology, have the potential to be a game-changer in maintaining a vape-free environment within school premises. While the specific details of the vape detectors being considered are yet to be finalized, one option being explored is the installation of cameras in hallways outside the bathrooms. When triggered by vaping, these detectors would not only sound an alert but also capture footage of individuals exiting the bathroom at that time.

Technological Considerations

The Superintendent's proactive approach involves evaluating various technological solutions to address the vaping problem. The installation of vape detectors, such as cameras equipped with vaping recognition algorithms, offers the possibility of identifying and addressing instances of bathroom vaping promptly. By capturing footage of those leaving the bathroom when a vape detector is triggered, the school authorities can identify the culprits and take appropriate action. Embracing such technological advancements could serve as a deterrent to potential vapers and create a healthier atmosphere for students and staff.

The Cost Barrier

Despite the promising benefits of vape detectors, the implementation process does come with its challenges. The primary hurdle is the cost involved. The estimated expenses for installing vape detectors in the bathrooms of Lewiston's middle and high schools range from $100,000 to $200,000. This substantial financial commitment has raised concerns among stakeholders.

Seeking Funding through Grants

To overcome the financial obstacle, Superintendent Langlais and the school district are actively seeking external funding opportunities through grants. By obtaining financial support from grants, the schools can move forward with their mission of creating a safer and healthier educational environment for their students. While the process of securing grants may require time and effort, it exemplifies the commitment of Lewiston's public schools to address pressing concerns and implement proactive measures.


In conclusion, the Superintendent of Lewiston public schools, Jake Langlais, is taking bold steps to address the issue of bathroom vaping among students. By considering the installation of vape detectors, equipped with advanced technology, he aims to not only tackle the problem of long wait times for bathrooms but also deter the use of e-cigarettes by students. Despite the financial challenges, the school district is determined to seek funding through grants, demonstrating their unwavering dedication to the well-being of their students and the enhancement of the learning environment.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Are vape detectors effective in preventing bathroom vaping?

Vape detectors have shown promising results in deterring bathroom vaping. By promptly identifying instances of vaping, school authorities can take appropriate action and create a vape-free environment.

2. What technologies are being considered for vape detectors?

The specific technologies for vape detectors are yet to be finalized. However, one option being explored is the use of cameras with vaping recognition algorithms, strategically placed outside the bathrooms.

3. How does bathroom vaping affect students' learning experience?

Bathroom vaping causes long wait times for students, disrupting their daily routines and affecting their focus in the classroom. It also poses health and safety risks to both vapers and non-vapers.

4. Can grants cover the entire cost of installing vape detectors?

Securing grants can significantly alleviate the financial burden, but it might not cover the entire cost. The school district may explore additional funding sources to implement the vape detectors fully.

5. Are there other measures being taken to address vaping in schools?

Alongside the potential installation of vape detectors, schools may also adopt educational programs, counseling services, and policies to raise awareness about the dangers of vaping and promote healthier choices among students.

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