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‘Pupils out of class going to the toilet is a safeguarding issue’

(49 Posts)
Tobermory Fri 06-Dec-19 12:23:53

Secondary teachers- you share your opinion about this ?
My DD y8, has periods most month 😕 and I’ve queried toilet passes with school. School sometimes use toilet passes but mainly discourage chn going to the loo mid lesson. I do understand this.
Her form teacher has emailed me back and used safeguarding as a reason for the schools reluctance to use toilet passes.
“It can lead to safeguarding issues around school “

Surely really what they’re talking about is stopping bad behaviour. Reducing oppprtunities for this... but would you describe this as safeguarding?

I’m not complaining about school, her form teacher is great and suggested an alternative solution. I’m just pondering this use of the phrase

OP’s posts: |
TheReluctantCountess Fri 06-Dec-19 12:25:13

Yes, it can be a safeguarding issue.

hen10 Sat 07-Dec-19 10:18:23

Because the children are unsupervised until they choose to come back to the classroom.

Cohle Sat 07-Dec-19 10:21:36

Yes, it's not just about stopping bad behaviour, it's about making sure the school are aware of the location of all children and that the pupils are receiving adequate supervision.

That said, in the circumstances you describe they should be able to make adequate accommodation for your DD.

0blio Sat 07-Dec-19 10:26:55

You mentioned on another thread that you are a teacher OP, surely you are aware of what safeguarding is?!

Mysterian Sat 07-Dec-19 10:28:09

Yup. Safeguarding alright. There are risks. Some you have to take because they're unavoidable, but they're still risks.

iriscornflowerblue Sat 07-Dec-19 10:30:53

Most women have periods most months, OP.

Selfsettling3 Sat 07-Dec-19 10:33:57

For some teenagers it is a greater risk than others. Toilet passes are normally issues for continuous use for medical issues by pastoral staff eg IBS or for a couple of days at form tutors at individual discretions.

LaserShark Sat 07-Dec-19 10:35:25

It is a safeguarding issue. When I was teaching there were children who would leave a lesson for the toilet and self harm, smoke, meet other students (in one case, a vulnerable girl meeting older boys at prearranged times mid-lesson to have sex in the toilets), truant, try to leave the premises... yes, unsupervised children around the school site are definitely a safeguarding issue!

We also had some students with serious health issues who could not be left unsupervised as well in case of seizures etc.

0blio Sat 07-Dec-19 10:38:21

My DD y8, has periods most month
hmmconfused

snowybaubles Sat 07-Dec-19 10:49:36

Unless she has a medical problem then periods are perfectly manageable within available toilet times.

I'm a bit baffled that you can't see why safeguarding could possibly be an issue with kids out of class

Tobermory Sat 07-Dec-19 15:45:45

Thanks for sensible, polite responses ... much appreciated. some really helpful responses which gave me pause for thought.

Yes @0blio, I am a teacher. Thanks for checking up though. I work in primary and have never set a teaching toe in secondary and as I’m sure you’ll understand safeguarding issues can be very different in these settings. Not quite sure the snarky faces were required.

@iriscornflowerblue, yes most women have periods every month, but she’s only had them since the summer so they are, understandably, irregular.

OP’s posts: |
CuckooCuckooClock Sat 07-Dec-19 17:18:16

I think any situation in which students are unsupervised and unlocatable could be a safeguarding issue.

Fraggling Sat 07-Dec-19 17:24:56

I do think that the lack of accommodation for the different needs girls have around menstruation is a bit shit tbh.

Periods are unpredictable and can be v heavy, come on suddenly etc.

Threads on here where even in primary schools a hard line has been taken around this.

Periods are a fact of life and can be hard to get to grips with. Saying girls should just get on with it and if they eg start unexpectedly bleeding all over the shop they haven't managed it properly ie it's their own fault is grim.

CuckooCuckooClock Sat 07-Dec-19 17:25:10

I personally think students should be allowed to use the loo in most cases but I know lots of teachers who disagree. Last year I got a bollocking from my head because I let a year 11 girl go to the loo during a lesson. She was a really good kid and her period had leaked through her trousers. Apparently it was a safeguarding risk because ‘nobody knew where she was’ ffs

Fraggling Sat 07-Dec-19 17:25:38

Mine both started periods Yr 5.

Luckily the school were understanding (and they weren't the only ones).

Fraggling Sat 07-Dec-19 17:26:37

Yy cuckoo

Needs of femsle students around their biology are their own fault and to manage quietly etc

It makes me quite angry tbh

Grasspigeons Sat 07-Dec-19 17:34:25

I cant see the safeguarding side of this either. They do know where she is, shes gone to the loo. It isnt any different than going to the loo in lunch, between lessons or break except some actuslly knows you have gone and expects you back. Is it thst the loos are quieter in lessons so more able to self harm in someway than during busy times.

Fraggling Sat 07-Dec-19 17:47:31

There's got to be a balance between safeguarding and allowing female students to attend to their biological needs.

Not allowing them to do this also has plenty of potential negative consequences.

likeafishneedsabike Sat 07-Dec-19 18:39:08

@Grasspigeons look at @LaserShark’s with the examples there. Shagging in the loo would not be a possibility during break time or between lessons. During lessons there is no one around and no staff to supervise.

Fraggling Sat 07-Dec-19 18:49:19

It's not either or.

It's not a choice between fucking in the bogs and bleeding through your clothes.

The dismissal of the embarrassment, difficulty and sometimes distress for especially younger girls around periods is so depressing.

I've read on here of primary schools who won't let the girls out to deal with it. Presumably on the basis they'll be off fucking in the toilets as well.

Better embarrassed and bloody than a slag? Funny tone to some of these posts...

Where are the boys in this.

ValancyRedfern Sat 07-Dec-19 18:52:39

I can see the safeguarding implications but as someone with vey heavy periods myself I hate the idea that girls should all be able to manage their periods only at break and lunchtimes. Unfortunately it doesn't always work that way. I've leaked through onto clothes during lessons but luckily I can choose the clothes I wear to school to hide this and can even ask a fellow teacher to supervise for a minute while I run to the toilet. I would never stop a girl who may be menstruating from going to the toilet in lesson (unless she clas to be on her period every week in which case I would smell a rat and act accordingly).

CuckooCuckooClock Sat 07-Dec-19 18:53:28

The thing with those examples from lasershark is there are other ways to deal.
Self-harm - if people need to use self harm to cope they will find a way even if they can’t go to the loo in lessons. They will just get more and more distressed until they have a chance.
Smoking - detectors are available plus you can smell when they return to lesson.
The vulnerable girl needs protection outside of lessons. Stopping her going in lessons won’t save her from abuse. You could argue that only girls should be allowed to use the loo in lessons- then no one gets raped.
I really do have a bee in my bonnet about this.

Tobermory Sat 07-Dec-19 18:56:31

@Grasspigeons, that was exactly my initial reactions

But at her school, pupils are sometimes used as office runners. She did this last week, spent a number of hours, shuttling between reception and different classrooms. So she was out of class, unsupervised and only reception knew where she was .
So how is going to the toilet a safeguarding issue but being an office runner is not?

OP’s posts: |
Cohle Sat 07-Dec-19 19:02:10

It does seem really odd that as a primary school teacher these aren't issues you've encountered, or are at least conscious of, yourself confused

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