Menstrual Products Available to Students in SoWashCo Schools Bathrooms Beginning January 2024
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo Schools) will begin providing menstrual products at no cost to students. The products will be available in bathrooms used by students in grades 4-12. This is in response to a new state law that takes effect on Jan. 1, 2024.
In 2023, the Minnesota State Legislature passed a state law mandating Minnesota schools to provide menstruation products in bathrooms for any student who needs them by Jan. 1, 2024. This will help remove access barriers to the products and increase equity among all menstruating students.
Data shows that 10% of menstruating youth miss school days because of a lack of access to menstrual products and 1 in 4 people who menstruate say they can’t afford the necessary products. Having sanitary pads available for free can help reduce student absences due to menstruation, improve equity and increase learning.
The dispensers will be refilled as needed during the school day so that students always have access. Dispensers will not be refilled outside of the school day as the products are only intended to be used by students.
Please remind your student that the pads should never be flushed down the toilet. They should be disposed of in the proper trash receptacles. Menstruation products, wipes and other similar items that are flushed down the toilet can cause burst pipes, sewer backups and other costly damages to buildings. Please also talk to your student about not wasting the products so we can ensure they are always available to those who need them.
If you or your student have any questions about the dispensers or how to use the product, please encourage them to visit the health office at school.