School needing a parent to come to change a child - ERIC


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School needing a parent to come to change a child

yellowdino profile image

Following my recent post about our long journey of stool withholding - I have sat down to fill out some forms for our boy’s school which he will start in September.

There’s a policy that reads “if your child is badly soiled we will phone you to collect your child from school”. I simply cannot believe this would be acceptable. We’ve been working with a GP and his nursery for years trying to rectify this - this would deprive him of education he is entitled to and would stop one of us from working. Surely this is not right? Any advice would be much appreciated.

Thank you!

8 Replies

Try the school nurse. You can get hold of them through the health visitors. They should advocate for your child. You could submit a care plan like the one on the eric website and use the word disability. We went in positive and friendly but firm and the school staff have been great. The teaching assistants have been fantastic and still are and we write thank you cards and gifts for all staff who deal with our little boy to show we appreciate their extra work with him. He's mostly independent at school now with his toileting in year 2. Good luck.

Taken from the Eric website:

t’s important to let the school nurse and the teaching staff know that your son suffers from constipation and soiling before he starts school. Talk to the school about setting up an Individual Health Care Plan (IHCP) to manage your son’s constipation. The IHCP will set out a proactive toileting programme which focuses on regular supervised toilet visits rather than solely dealing with soiling accidents. It’s not enough for your son simply to be given regular access to the toilet – young children with constipation need to be supervised when going to the loo.

The IHCP should also ensure your son’s constipation and soiling is managed discretely and sensitively so that it doesn’t become apparent to other children.

Are schools allowed to call a parent or carer in to change their child if they've had an accident?

Although school staff should use their discretion and judge each case on its merits with reference to a child’s individual healthcare plan, it is not generally acceptable practice to ask parents to come into school to change their child after they've wet or soiled themselves.

Only one member of staff needs to be present when changing a child, as long as another member of staff is nearby, so it shouldn't be necessary to call in a parent (see answer to question 2).

It is tantamount to abuse to force/allow a child to sit in wet or soiled underwear until their parent or guardian can come in to change them.

For more detail on this and other unacceptable practice, see the statutory guidance on implementing the Children and Families Act.

The Department for Education's statutory guidance on supporting pupils at school with medical conditions states it is not acceptable for schools to:

Prevent pupils from drinking, eating or taking toilet or other breaks whenever they need to in order to manage their medical condition effectively;

Require parents, or otherwise make them feel obliged, to attend school to administer medication or provide medical support to their child, including with toileting issues. No parent should have to give up working because the school is failing to support their child’s medical needs;

Prevent children from participating, or create unnecessary barriers to children participating in any aspect of school life, including school trips, e.g. by requiring parents to accompany the child.

I've had to collect my granddaughter from school on several occasions, sometimes because of accidents but it's not the same thing as going in to change a nappy.Soiled can mean more than just soiling there pants, her school will always clean her up as best as they can but they can only clean her with wipes which sometimes aren't enough to get her clean enough to go back into class.

yes as the others have said please contact the school nurse asap and get something put in writing before he starts.Having read horror stories on here and from my own experience it can be very hit and miss, there was an incredibly kind teaching assistant in my Dd's class who was there to support an autistic child, who took my daughter under a wing...but obviously she wasnt always there at the right time so she did often come home very smelly in dirty clothes, one awful day I picked her up at the end of the day to find liquid poo running down her legs. Its really important to start teaching your son how to change and clean himself as well as possible before then in case he is not dealt with how he should be. If I knew than what I know now I would have been far firmer and direct with insisting the school treat it as the disability it is.

It's not fair, and unnecessary especially for nursery age and primary 1 where lots of kids aren't perfect in their toilet use! There's lots of good advice here. The only thing I would add is that I gave the nursery/school a bag with plenty of wipes, gloves, disposal bags and a roll of aprons as well as 2 full changes of clothes so there could be no suggestion of using up school resources! I even included red laundry bags for soiled clothes. It was one way to remove a barrier to them dealing with the issue without me!

I had the same problem when my son was in primary 1 they would ring me at work to go and get him , however I had a very good health visitor who had a meeting with the head teacher and explained it was unacceptable to be expected to be called to the school, hope this helps

I am going through this with my son I am currently going up to his school up to four times a day to change him he has been withholding for last 3 years, have tried everything now waiting for a referral to another hospital he has been on movicol sodium picosolphate had enemas had a system called pura to flush him at home nothing works I have now refused to give him any more invasive rectal treatment my aim now is to make sure he is clean and comfortable at school as he has missed so much not ideal but unfortunately that’s my only option

It shouldn't be a requirement for them to have to change your child. They miss out so much due to children not being toilet trained.

If your child's disabled I'd speak to the incontinence team and the school nurse to discuss open options.

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