Should these children have been allowed to go to the toilets unattended?

(98 Posts)
FourArms Wed 10-Jul-13 20:30:35

I know I know this gets discussed all the time.. but there is a twist on this one!

I was picking up DS from a Beavers trip tonight and arrived a little early. Whilst I was there, I overheard a child ask to go to the toilet. The Beavers leader asked if he wanted anyone to go with him. He said yes. Then another Beaver said they knew were the toilets were, so they were sent in together.

So, two children, aged around 6/7, whose parents weren't there, went to the toilet themselves in an sports centre type environment. We were outside, loos inside a building and not visible from where we were.

Because I was picking up the child sent to accompany the first child, I discreetly observed them to ensure they were OK. Nobody else monitored their return.

Is this OK? I would not like my DS to go to the toilet himself under these circumstances (children opposite sexes so didn't go in to toilets together). When I took him later, he got stuck in there because the door was too heavy, but it's the risk of something much more unlikely happening that concerns me.

AIBU to think they shouldn't have allowed this? Is there a regulation about it? I know it wouldn't have been allowed on the school trips that I've accompanied.

KobayashiMaru Wed 10-Jul-13 20:32:10

If the leader brought every child alone to the toilet, who would be minding the rest of them? And when would they get to do anything else?

FourArms Wed 10-Jul-13 20:35:25

There were four leaders there.

Turniptwirl Wed 10-Jul-13 20:35:26

Was in the park with brownies last week and (having asked them to go to the toilet when before we left) a child needing the toilet was sent with an older girl, I'm the end about four of them went. If one had got stuck, one of the others would have run back to us.

You can't be alone with a child so either two adults or two children wouldve had to go

6/7 is fine to me for a wee bit of independence in going to the toilet. I think it's OK. Would be happy for my DD to go alone at that age and in those circumstances.

ParadiseChick Wed 10-Jul-13 20:36:29


mumblechum1 Wed 10-Jul-13 20:37:31

I think it's fine.

Sirzy Wed 10-Jul-13 20:37:42

So you want one leader to go into the toilets with 2 children? That in itself is a big child protection no no.

You can't follow every child to the toilet.

BarbarianMum Wed 10-Jul-13 20:37:46

I would be fine with this, it's standard practice to send two together at my son's Beavers.

curlew Wed 10-Jul-13 20:38:01

Perfectly fine- they were 6/7 not 3/4

CrowsLanding Wed 10-Jul-13 20:39:26

Yabu. Of course a 6/7 year old can go to the loo alone. hmm

TheCutOfYourJib Wed 10-Jul-13 20:39:56

Yes it's fine.

CrowsLanding Wed 10-Jul-13 20:40:43

Op. What was the 'twist' to this story? just out of interest smile

Chottie Wed 10-Jul-13 20:41:24

I would be fine with this too. The boys were familiar with the layout of the building so would not get lost. They were together too.

Tobagostreet Wed 10-Jul-13 20:42:55

Sorry - YABU

Nothing wrong with this.

HeySoulSister Wed 10-Jul-13 20:45:15

Oh dear op..... Yabu

usualsuspect Wed 10-Jul-13 20:45:37

Perfectly fine

Iwaswatchingthat Wed 10-Jul-13 20:47:09

I would not be happy my child of that age going to the toilet alone or with another child the same age in a public sports hall unsupervised. The leader should have done a group toilet trip at the start of the visit. Maybe I am overprotective, but that really does not sit well with me.

FourArms Wed 10-Jul-13 20:47:13

Twist - they were in someone else's care. They didn't go together - opposite sexes. Girl showed boy were loos were & returned.

Interesting that most happy with this. If my DS had been the boy he would have been trapped in there as the door was too heavy for him to open (had to send older brother to help when I heard shout) and he'd have been very distressed.

Where are the guidelines re 2 adults?

FourArms Wed 10-Jul-13 20:48:08

where loos were!

ihearsounds Wed 10-Jul-13 20:48:34

The alternative would have been the child peeing/pooing themselves. Adult cannot put themselves in a situation of accusations made against them, so wont accompany a child alone. Then there's child/adult ratio's and by taking 2 members of staff out of the room with the beavers, they would not adhering to this.

curlew Wed 10-Jul-13 20:48:48

The door was too heavy for a 7 year old? Where was it, Fort Knox?


Most NT 6/7yos can go to the toilet themselves, surely? I would be fine with it.

HildaOgden Wed 10-Jul-13 20:57:41

There isn't a paedophile lurking in every corner.Just thought I'd reassure you of that.

That being said,I think it would have been good practice for the leaders to split up into 2 sets of 2,and bring the whole group for a toilet break at some stage during the trip (2 leaders supervising girls,2 leaders supervising boys).

YABU, it sounds fine to me.

It's fine and you are being a bit ott

Are you going to be stomping into beavers next time to complain loudly?

( a drama llama ding dong?)

BarbarianMum Wed 10-Jul-13 21:04:37

<<That being said,I think it would have been good practice for the leaders to split up into 2 sets of 2,and bring the whole group for a toilet break at some stage during the trip (2 leaders supervising girls,2 leaders supervising boys).>>

I would be very surprised if they hadn't done exactly that. And even more surprised if it had made any difference at all. I have never assisted on a trip - Beavers/school/otherwise where at least one child needed the loo immediately at some massively inconvenient time.

Getting stuck in the loo is part of life's rich tapestry, happens at least once to every child doesn't it? Ds1 has already managed it 3 times and he's only 7.5

Sirzy Wed 10-Jul-13 21:06:00

A 7 year old unable to open a toilet door?

BarbarianMum Wed 10-Jul-13 21:07:33

And the 2 adults per child thing is standard practice (outside of nurseries/preschool) in just about any group or organisation that works with children.

5madthings Wed 10-Jul-13 21:08:29

Yabu at that age they are fine to go to the toilet on their own.

To be fair yes some doors are heavy, or the kid pushes instead of pulls, not easy if a shortie either.

ShatnersBassoon Wed 10-Jul-13 21:09:50

YABU. Why shouldn't a child of that age be given a tiny amount of responsibility?

FourArms Wed 10-Jul-13 21:14:03

High door handle, slim child & heavy door. There were two boys aged 7 in there, neither could open it.

When I'm out I do let DS 1&2 go to loo together. Strict instructions to stay together. I watch the clock until they return. I would send DH in / open door and shout if they were too long. This wasn't what happened.

If I am looking after someone else's child I accompany them. I only consider risks mine to take with my children, not someone else's.

I know there isn't a paedophile in every loo, but equally I don't want my child scarred for life by meeting one - already have a family member with those scars. sad

towerofjelly Wed 10-Jul-13 21:16:21


exoticfruits Wed 10-Jul-13 21:22:17

I think that a Beaver age child could cope with the door!
As a former Beaver leader I would say that meetings wouldn't be very interesting if you were missing accompanying DCs to the toilet when they are quite old enough to go and there were actually 2 of them.

FourArms Wed 10-Jul-13 21:39:48

OK, if this is so commonplace then I'll need to rethink his activities. sad Accept IABU by the standards of most people. Mine are obviously coloured by family history.

MaureenMLove Wed 10-Jul-13 21:40:59

Then I suggest you volunteer to help at Beavers, to avoid it happening again. If uniformed leaders went to the toilet every time a child wanted to go, they may as well hold the session in the toilets!

curlew Wed 10-Jul-13 21:46:20

Oh, please don't pull him put of Beavers! Accept that you are being a bit......over protective.... And let him carry on having fun with his friends!

NoComet Wed 10-Jul-13 21:47:38

Gym club have all sorts of complicated new rules the girls think they are hilarious. So long as they go in pairs and check in with a leader as they leave and come back, what's the problem.

And what's this about one adult, the worlds gone barking mad.

Turniptwirl Wed 10-Jul-13 21:49:29

I'm sure that the beaver leaders (like us) asked the children if they needed the toilet before they went. This never stops the cries if "I need a wee" popping up at inconvenient times

We also let them go alone in our meeting place would you object to that?

Plus I spent a weekend where we let children age 10+ loose in the countryside with a route map and compass, presumably that was terrible too? The kids were in groups of 3 or more and there were fully crb checked adults at regular points along the route and help available in a land river if required. Not to mention that on the campsite we not only let the girls go to the toilet alone but they basically had the freedom of the whole site! Not beaver age kids but some as young as 10. They absolutely loved it and I think benefited hugely from the independence and freedom they had that they don't have anywhere else.

Things like beavers are all about pushing boundaries within a responsible environment. Kids who are never given the chance to cope with things on their own will never learn how to!

Sirzy Wed 10-Jul-13 21:50:10

And what's this about one adult, the worlds gone barking mad.

Its to protect the adult. Good practise for anyone working with young people is not to leave yourself in a position where you are alone with children, certainly not alone with one child as if they were to make an allegation then it is there word against yours. Sad that it has to be done but there have been cases (normally with older children though) where that has happened.

5madthings Wed 10-Jul-13 21:53:28

What sirzy said the rule is to protect the adult as much as the child.

Pennyacrossthehall Wed 10-Jul-13 22:01:07

You can't be alone with a child so either two adults or two children would've had to go

This is a tragic reflection of the state of the world. And 99% of it is just paranoia.

exoticfruits Wed 10-Jul-13 22:07:16

Exactly Penny but there are strict rules for leaders- you are not allowed to accompany a Beaver to the loo alone- you would be very silly to flout it, it is for the protection of the leader.

exoticfruits Wed 10-Jul-13 22:09:48

I used to give my neighbours child a lift to Beavers- I was told that I had to make it clear that I was giving the lift as a friend and not as a Beaver leader. A Beaver leader can't give a lift to a lone Beaver.

manicinsomniac Wed 10-Jul-13 22:10:37

You can be alone with children where I work and we could take them to the toilet if we wanted to - but there is no need, they are fine.

No child goes alone and I have to be told they are going are my only rules when out and about.

manicinsomniac Wed 10-Jul-13 22:11:40

And it isn't just extracurricular activities you're going to have to stop if you never want your child unsupervised in a toilet - you'd have to home school or refuse all school trips too!

Turniptwirl Wed 10-Jul-13 22:20:17

Oh I agree the rules are a sad reflection of society, but you have to protect yourself. Rules are in place to protect children and adults. We follow them to protect ourselves.

I had a situation where I would potentially have been alone with a girl (initially in a jeep with two other crb checked adults, then first aid with several other crb checked adults in the room and many more plus kids in earshot. Then walking back to the tent with her but surrounded by other people. I stayed outside her tent and sent her inside to rest. Fortunately there was another leader around when we got there who could've come with me if I'd had to go in the tent with the girl but otherwise not sure what I'd have done. Well actually if if was life or death I would've gone in, otherwise made her come out so we were at least in view of others and probably taken her back to first aid.

exoticfruits Wed 10-Jul-13 22:21:17

Exactly manic. As a teacher out at a museum, swimming pool etc of course you send a few children off to the toilet together.
Last time I went to the Natural History Museum there was a notice saying that boys over 6yrs should not be going in the ladies- no doubt necessitated by over protective parents. I am surprised that boys put up with it- mine refused to go in the ladies once they were that age.

exoticfruits Wed 10-Jul-13 22:23:48

The whole system is mad! Earlier in the week the organisation that I was with had a 15yr old girl on work experience- really she shouldn't have been with anyone who didn't have a CRB check!

ShoutyCrackers Wed 10-Jul-13 22:32:34

Can't you work on accepting that you're OTT and not think about removing him from Beavers? That just smacks of complete over reaction.

FourArms Thu 11-Jul-13 06:54:23

Didn't say I'd remove him - that I would rethink activities. In future I would stay to events like this - many other parents do too.

curlew Thu 11-Jul-13 07:08:32

Why don't you volunteer to be a helper?

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Thu 11-Jul-13 07:09:55

I would not be happy either. My Dd attends gymnastics in a sports centre and the teacher took great pains to tell me when we joined that the children are all taken together on group trips to the toilet. She also said if one child wants to visit the toilet just after a group trip, then one of the CRB checked teachers from gymnastics will accompany the child but wait outside.

Sports centres are HUGE open places. We're not talking about a kid of 7 being allowed to nip to the loo in McDonald's....the children could have wandered off....out of the centre or anything.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Thu 11-Jul-13 07:14:06

OP yanbu. Mumsnet has this curious fake idea that there are NO pedophiles and NO odd people at all and as a result we should let our kids do anything and go anywhere. It's a weird attitude imo and every time someone comes on here and asks something like this, there are loads of cries of "not ALL men are peadophiles" and frankly it's odd!

exoticfruits Thu 11-Jul-13 07:17:59

The answer is to volunteer to be a helper and then the problem is solved.
They always need helpers.

Personally I think two children going off to the toilet in a sports centre is much safer than a 7yr old 'nipping to the loo in McDonalds.'

exoticfruits Thu 11-Jul-13 07:18:58

Not at all odd, NeoMax, nice to see there is some common sense.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Thu 11-Jul-13 07:22:43

HOw is it safer to go to the loo in a public Sports Centre than in McDonalds Exotic?

outingmyselfprobably Thu 11-Jul-13 07:31:26

Yabu. There really aren't that many paedos. Stop being so paranoid.

And maybe you could get your DS to lift weights or something to build up his door opening strength....

BrianTheMole Thu 11-Jul-13 07:34:37

Funny, Dd's rainbow teacher always watches the children go to the toilet, and sometimes stops the group from doing their activities if she is on her own. I thought she was a little ott, but she pointed out that she had to watch them to make sure they were safe, as they were her responsibility. In the situation you describe I would want someone to keep an eye out.

DaemonPantalaemon Thu 11-Jul-13 07:39:12

You are definitely not unreasonable OP.

Better to have children peeing and pooing on themselves if the alternative is to go to the loo on their own. There is a paedophile in every toilet in the UK after all. In fact, don't even trust the Beavers leaders, or school teachers for that matter.

And don't send your kids to school because the teachers could be anyone. And certainly no to all after school activities. For instance, it is perfectly fine to teach them to swim safely in the bath at home.

You really can't be too careful.

exoticfruits Thu 11-Jul-13 07:50:12

Given a choice of sending mine alone in a sports centre or McDonalds I would feel much safer in the sports centre.

gazzalw Thu 11-Jul-13 08:00:58

Yes, I really think children need to be given the opportunity to do these things on their own. They need to. We really do not need to be raising children who see danger everywhere. Generally it is not there. You will just make them hyper anxious and reluctant to go anywhere without a helicoptering parent...

Sparklysilversequins Thu 11-Jul-13 08:05:53


I regularly accompany dd's Year 1 class on school trips. They are not allowed to go alone. An adult always goes with them.

xylem8 Thu 11-Jul-13 09:35:01

I despair, I really do!

There are a lot of sex offenders in our society and also generally abusive people towards children, look at when any child goes missing, how many known sex offenders have to be ruled out, before others are looked at (if you do not believe my first line).

However, i would consider a sports center reasonably safe, as opposed to Macdonalds. There are issues with both, but independence needs to start to be built up at around the age of 7. Sports Centers are CTTV'd in communal areas, which makes them safer.

On another thread i didn't agree to a child of around 4 going on their own, but at 7, i think that it is fine for them to go in pairs, or ideally a small group, without an adult.

Sirzy Thu 11-Jul-13 10:35:53

I also think it needs to be remembered that most children who are abused are abused by someone they know.

Mumsyblouse Thu 11-Jul-13 10:40:13

I let my children go to the toilet by themselves now, they are 7 and 9, I cannot accompany them every time, and if I went with one, the other one would be sitting by themselves (unless we all go every single time). I don't find Sports Centre loos particularly risky, ours have ladies anyway. By the time they are 11 they need to be able to travel on public transport for an hour (to school) including using public lavs if needs be and keeping safe from strangers. I would have thought 6/7, letting a child go to the loo, with you waiting outside, is fine.

burberryqueen Thu 11-Jul-13 10:44:06

I think it is OK although i understand your worry.

gazzalw Thu 11-Jul-13 10:49:24

'lots of sex offenders' actually constitute a very, very small number as a % of the population. Do you actually know anyone who has had a nasty experience, except for those reported thro' The Media?

Looking back to my own childhood, any dodgy behaviour by adult males seemed to happen in parks/open spaces....

It is not to say that one should be complacent - agree that a sports facility is probably a lot safer than many though....

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Thu 11-Jul-13 10:52:15

I want to know WHY people think sports centres are safer? Is it because people pay to join? Pay to attend activities there? confused any Tom Dick or Harry can do that...and anyone can go in to use cafe facilities or toilets! They're not closed shops!

Solari Thu 11-Jul-13 11:00:12

Many people (including myself) who have been molested/raped as a child will never speak about it to their family, let alone their friends.

I think this results in people thinking it is far rarer than it is. My own experiences involved a family member, but also two people outside the family, on unconnected instances under the age of 8 where they simply saw an opportunity and took it.

My DH knows, but none of my friends would have a clue, as its extraordinarily painful to talk about, and (for me) humiliating.

I don't think the "hysteria" around paedophilia is hysteria at all. I think society is just starting to really open its eyes to it.

curlew Thu 11-Jul-13 11:03:44

"I want to know WHY people think sports centres are safer?"

I want to know why people think that they are even remotely dangerous!

Waltons Thu 11-Jul-13 11:06:47

By far the bigger risk is that, in the chaos at collection time, a child is collected by (as sirzy points out) someone they know but who is not authorised to collect them. The child doesn't realise and happily goes off with them. It is only when mum turns up 5 minutes later that the truth emerges. <shudders at the mere thought>

The leaders were almost certainly making it their priority to ensure that each child was collected by the right person and that none of the kids wandered out of the centre.

If you were collecting from the entrance of the sports centre, the loos would be further inside the building.

curlew Thu 11-Jul-13 11:20:48

I would be very worried about any activity involving 7 and unders where there was "chaos at collection time"

'lots of sex offenders' actually constitute a very, very small number as a % of the population. Do you actually know anyone who has had a nasty experience, except for those reported thro' The Media?

I work in Children's services and daily have to put people's names into our computers, the amount that deliberately target vulnerable families and make sure that they attend where children are going to be, the amount of the general population, who are a risk to children, would shock the people.

Also the amount of child abusers/sex offenders who are not prosecuted, is of a similar level to DV perpetrators.

I also have family who work across services and when plans are made for those who are abusers and for the most dangerous one's (who have one to one care), is getting better in listing where and when they can attend.

Also informing places such as leisure centers where Beaver type groups use, so there is more monitoring, is getting better.

Whereas anyone can walk into a Macdonalds, unchecked.

Unless you work in services, you probably don't know what is happening to make places safer and why those policies are needed.

For example, when Tia Sharp went missing, 300 known sex offenders had to be ruled out, before they looked towards the family, that was in Croydon.

curlew Thu 11-Jul-13 11:28:40

Why would they rule out then300 known sex offenders first before looking to the family when overwhelmingly the culprit is in the family?

Waltons Thu 11-Jul-13 11:35:42

I would be very worried about any activity involving 7 and unders where there was "chaos at collection time"

Funnily enough, curlew, everything is very well-organised until the parents turn up.

20 or 30 parents, all talking to each other until the leaders can't make themselves heard, half of them want to ask the leaders questions about something that could easily wait for a text the next day (and that they've probably already been told 3 times already) ...

curlew Thu 11-Jul-13 11:41:13


We keep our parents well back behind the machine gun emplacement traffic cones, and release the children one by one. If they want to talk, they have to wait til the end.

Hard, our Cub Leader. hard.

gazzalw Thu 11-Jul-13 11:43:30

I am not negating that there is an issue with predatory adults and one needs to be cautious (but I still think you can be overcautious to the point of actually making children afraid to do anything on their own), but Birdsgottafly, you are presumably working at "the thick end of the wedge" and have as distorted a view of reality as we the lay public have the opposite view.

Waltons Thu 11-Jul-13 11:58:28

curlew grin

I wish that my reality was distorted, the point is that to an extent, you can make decisions about what risks your own children can take, within reason, but those running clubs need to take extra care.

When it is said that a child will be attacked/abused by someone they know, that person who goes to the leisure center, would be counted as someone they know (as in the case of April Jones, a neighbour, who hung about when the children would be out), the same applies to so called relatives (but personally i don't count a new boyfriend as someone the child does know, they have targeted a LP).

We should take care with children under around 7, which is the case here, so in this instance, it is fine.

Children do start to pick up on "not quite right attention" at this age. This is why we have started to stop the previous unnecessary hugs and kisses to strangers from children, as well as calling everyone Aunt/Uncle etc.

Solari Thu 11-Jul-13 12:17:16

I don't think Birdsgottafly has a distorted view if what she is seeing are the actual numbers of individuals and incidences involved.

The public on the other hand, really does have no idea, because sexual offenders are utterly invisible (just look like your average human being).

There also seems to be the impression that if you don't know anyone it happened to, that it must be rare. The problem is that with molestation/rape, large numbers of people don't talk about it. Even official stats don't reflect the entirety of the truth as many also never report.

I think its a good thing society is trying to shed more light on the problem through media (although sensationalism doesn't help). And I do think there is a balance to be struck between being utterly terrified of letting your children out of your sight, and flippantly disregarding risk that does actually exist.

FourArms Thu 11-Jul-13 21:22:32

Interesting you should mention the chaos at pick up
time - that was when the much more serious (IMO obviously!!) incident happened. But I know IANBU about that one!!

Perhaps if you know no-one who has been sexually assaulted you feel the world is safer, but opposite if it has happened to someone close to you. sad

Why don't I volunteer? I do already, just not at Beavers. I can't do everything sadly and nor do I want to - I do feel this builds independence, DS2 would rely on me for everything if I was there.

BTW - sports centre 'type' environment was me being deliberately vague - there would have been no CCTV in toilets (is there anywhere?!). This wouldn't necessarily prevent an incident anyway - just assist in conviction afterwards.

aldiwhore Thu 11-Jul-13 21:26:38

I think I cannot judge this.

It very much depends on how busy the sport's centre is, how big, how risky.

Our local "sport's centre" is a large shed with an office and loos.
Our city's is massive.

For example, I allow my 5 yr old to go to the loo alone in one local Sainsbury's, in another local Sainsbury's I wouldn't dream of it.

You are probably NBU, but there is a chance you are.

Sorry to be vague!

aldiwhore Thu 11-Jul-13 21:29:27

I should add that my main concern would be a child getting into difficulty rather than being abused.

I remember having an accident in public loos, I just didn't make it to the cubicle quick enough, I was around 6/7 yrs old. I was toop scared to shout for help, and there was no adult within shouting range. I was there for 20 minutes with pooy pants before anyone 'responsible' came searching for me. I was distraught.

littleducks Thu 11-Jul-13 21:41:34

I asked about this when I went as a parent helper on a school trip and wasnt sure what to do, they let children go alone but said in their experience its never just one child that then goes several will want to and that's exactly how it played out.

exoticfruits Thu 11-Jul-13 22:09:01

A child didn't go alone in OP.

Permanentlyexhausted Thu 11-Jul-13 22:27:50

The simple answer here is that the Beavers should be taken en masse to the toilet at the start of the activity and told that there will be no further toilet breaks until their parents collect them. That's how it works with my Brownies. I don't spend my precious free time planning activities just to spend half the meeting time hanging around public toilets so children can go to the toilet at their own convenience rather than everyone else's.

xylem8 Thu 11-Jul-13 22:31:15

Lord Baden Powell would be turning in his grave at this mollycoddling of 7 year olds

babyhmummy01 Thu 11-Jul-13 22:49:08

All depends on number of kids, there are insurance ratios that need to be covered for the group remaining as well as the safeguarding issues of "thou shalt not be alone with kids" issue. So it would have needed 2 adults to take the kids which may have left them under staffed to look after the rest. It's a tricky situation (i'm a brownie leader) but I think a lot depends on maturity of the kids and whether its a venue they were familiar with.

I personally always make sure I have more adults than necessary due to this sort of thing but I do allow the kids to go to the loo unaccompanied in our venue and they are a fair way from me.

exoticfruits Thu 11-Jul-13 22:49:57

I remember asking a 6yr old to wait a few minutes and she wet the carpet saying 'well it is too late now'- so I go with letting them go if they want to go!

FourArms Thu 11-Jul-13 22:57:10

Two children went in - boy & girl. Boy went into toilet & girl came out of building. Boy was left alone. So child did go in alone. And child was asked initially if they wanted someone to go with them, I'm sure if they'd said no they'd have been allowed to go in alone.

Toilets at guide hut - fine. Toilets at external unfamiliar (never been before) venue - not fine.

babyhmummy01 Thu 11-Jul-13 23:03:31

If the sports place was somewhere they didn't know then I am gonna risk.getting flamed and say Yanbu.

I can understand the leaders reasonings as I have outlined above regarding ratios and safeguarding themselves HOWEVER as leaders we all know at least one kid will refuse to per when.everyone does and then demand to go later and as such I always ensure I have additional adults or guides to assist with things like loo runs.

I wouldn't necessarily do anything about this at the moment OP, but it might be worth having a word next time an event is arranged and asking if enough adults are there to cover unexpected loo requirements and if not volunteer to help that week

ThisIsMummyPig Thu 11-Jul-13 23:09:40

I am a guide leader, so 10+. One night I told two girls they couldn't go to the toilet 5 minutes before the end of the night, as I was certain they were going to mess about, and leave paper all over the floor.

My District commissioner was there, and told me quite categorically I could never refuse to let a child go to the toilet. Basically you can never know if there are medical issues.

The last few minutes is always a bit of a rush - they have their stuff to get together, letters and receipts to give out, and we like to tell them about what's coming up (tie your hair up next week, we're cooking, type of thing). I can easily see why you would need your adults with you if you were doing this for small children.

What I can't understand from your posts is if there were any other people in the building, or if it was just your son's beaver troop tonight.

curlew Thu 11-Jul-13 23:26:46

I just think it's sad that we have such low expectations of our children,

Permanentlyexhausted Thu 11-Jul-13 23:37:01

My Brownies have just had to learn and I'm yet to have one who has had an accident. I often have meetings where I am the only CRB-checked adult and it would be rare for me to have more than the absolute minimum number of adults for my ratios. I cannot send children to the toilet with a non-CRB checked adult, I cannot leave children behind with non-CRB checked adults. I cannot be in two places at once. This isn't a problem in our normal meeting place but it is when we go out and about.

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