Toilet breaks during lesson time: I teach year 6 and do... - ERIC

4,143 members1,745 posts

Toilet breaks during lesson time


I teach year 6 and do not let children go to the toilet during lesson time. What is the policy for your children / class?

13 Replies

They go to the toilet when they need to. Why do you stop pupils going?

As far as I am concerned, to be able to go to the toilet when you need to is a basic human right, and no-one has the right to stop another person from using the toilet. The need to poo, in particular, does not always conveniently coincide with break times, and holding it in can cause a child to have constipation or soiling problems.

One of the reasons my son has problems with the embarrassment in front of other pupils to beg to go to the toilet at school at primary - now at secondary has a medical pass card and can go whenever he needs too.

in reply to Jayjay-1

I think the embarrassment and shame of wetting your pants is worse than not asking

education settings have a statutory duty to support children with health conditions including bladder/bowel issues. please see ERIC's "Right to Go" campaign/ leaflet. We have always specifically notified my daughters class teacher at the start of each school year so they have always let her go as required but I'm aware that with stand in or supply teachers this doesn't always happen as it should. It may be worth discussing in your school about use of pass cards to allow for consistent use & to avoid the child's embarrassment as by year 6 they are definitely going to be facing issues with their peers, the school nurse service is also there to support a child's continence needs. I understand some children may be time wasters but for many you are risking a child who can't learn properly due to being wet/soiled /in pain and too embarrassed or stressed to learn.

in reply to clmls123

I was the same, in the end I had to stop drinking water and wait until the end of the day. I couldn’t risk wetting my self

Agree with above. Having a child with urgency/frequency means he can't hold until a break time - he gets 30 seconds warning. Continence problems are more frequent than people realise and are often not talked about. Prior to diagnosis teachers (infant school) would often say - oh he's making it up to get out of xyz. Not being believed had a negative impact on self esteem.

My son is allowed to go in class but I have had to speak to them to ensure this does happen. He has a particular wave when he puts his hand up to distinguish from just putting his hand up to ask a question. This is supposed to help him get a quick answer from the teacher

Why do you not let them? What if they need to go? I’m a primary 7 teacher (age 11/12) and always let them go - within reason and have never had an issue with this? Just curious is all as and totally understand everyone has different ways of doing things and policies :)

I think it’s varies between schools and teachers unfortunately. I am pleased to see you treat your pupils with respect and hopefully they respect you too

It would be wonderful if we were all able to go at break and lunch but that’s just not the case. Children have break and lunch to have a release so quite often forget to go to the loo which is completely understandable. Our job as teachers are to nurture and help them grow, withholding something that should be a given right will never achieve this!

I have never understood why children can’t go to the toilet, surely a good teacher will know their pupils well and distinguish who is genuine and who isn’t? I actually wet my self in year 6, when the teacher wouldn’t let me go and nearly destroyed me

in general, children should use the toilet at break or lunch time, but the bladder is not predictable and you may need to go after breaks. It’s unacceptable to be desperate and potentially have an accident

You may also like...