Kelly1991

Would this rule bother you as a parent?

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I am a primary school teacher (year 5). I don't let children go to the loo during lesson time. Would you be upset if the rule was applied to your child?

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Yes as when I was in primary school I was told I couldn't go to the toilet and the absolute brutal force I went through that class has stuck with me since I was in year 2 I even remember the classroom because of it, I went at break time too but I have a small bladder, I believe every child has the right to go to the bathroom at least once during class, you can usually tell when a kid is lying to you. After that I was never the same if I was told I couldn't go I would try hold it but eventually would just PI$$ my self. 

 

Let the kiddos go to the toilet, Please.

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As a kid with IBS I often had to leave class for the loo despite going at break, and was made to feel bad for it.  Being told you can't go makes it worse for those of us triggered by anxiety as well.

At college, uni, a large number of jobs you can go when you need to, so it's not exactly realistic, just about the teacher having power over kids tbh.

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Can cause bladder and kidney problems in later life, so I would object.  Article 3 of the ECHR prohibits cruel and degrading treatment, so its simply unlawful.

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I think like Ryan said they should go at least once. I wasnt a big fan going to the toilet back in primary school due to the disgusting state of the toilets I've seen. In year 2 I remember I wet myself when getting changed for PE. Can't remember if the teacher was stopping from going to the loo. Thankfully I'd just hold it but mainly I'd go before going school. Even now in uni I don't go to the toilets. 

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How old are Year 5 children and how long is your class? Regardless I would say that kind of rule would be barbaric, I don’t think using that word is inappropriate to describe this. How would you feel if you were not allowed to go to the toilet for 7 hours, especially after having a morning snack and a lunch break? I believe 7 hours is a fair comparison when you think of the anatomical size difference of a child’s bladder to your own.

If my child was in your class and this happened to her I would tell her to just politely say she had to go then stand up and leave the class, after all you can’t physically stop her. I’d then take this up with either the teacher or head teacher. Failing that, if she could not leave I’d tell her I go and pee on your chair and see how long the rule stuck lol. 

Obviously I do not have a child in your class so this response is purely my own opinion of the facts provided, it’s not the start of a keyboard war with you Kelly.

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Year 5 children are 9 and 10 year olds. They have a morning break and a lunchbreak. They never go more than a couple of hours without the chance to go for a wee.

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Unfortunately, the European Convention on Human Rights is law.  Period. 

There is no lawful excuse or reason you can give for breaching Article 3.

Mrs Tull is a year 4 teacher and is fully cognisant of such regulations, so I'm puzzled why someone elsewhere appears not to be.  A developmental area for both you and your employer.

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I always thought it was a pointless rule. In my job at least you go when you want to and shouldn't count as part of your brew time or dinner. Fair enough taking the mick and clamping down but to be told you can only go and "splash your shoes" during your own time was a bit frustrating at school.

At high school they made it so you had to sign a key out at reception so they could keep track of people going. Bit sad really. What happens if you're about to see your breakfast/dinner for the second time and the toilet door is locked?

Perhaps saying "can you not wait 5 or 10 minutes whilst I finish teaching this part?" would be a better approach. Then if they're working through tasks without you stood up infront talking then let them go. That way it doesn't disrupt the class and pretty sure most "normal" people could wait 5 minutes or whatever.

Just my two cents.

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I was a bit of a law unto myself in school so if I wanted to go the loo then I would, I’d always ask First but rarely waited for the answer, probably why I spent 4 years of high school on ‘report’ lol. I’ve now got a profession and somewhat respectable job so it never did me any harm to go to the loo during lesson time lol.

out of interest Kelly what do the other teachers in the school do in their classes? I’m guessing that there has been some sort of trouble with a parent for you to ask this question, what does the head teacher say?

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Again, this is an area for our long lost friend common sense.

You need to use your 'judge-ment' (noun: ability to use ones knowledge and experience to make an informed decision) as to whether they're playing on it or not.

 

Adults need to remember that they are shaping the behaviour now that their children will enact for the rest of their lives.

There is no reason that you shouldn't treat a child with the same respect as you would treat an adult. After all, we as adults, parents and daytime carers (whether that be teachers or nursery staff etc) are charged with the responsibility of bringing up all children and they learn from us. If you behave in a way that you would not otherwise condone towards them what should you expect back?

It always amuses (but also disgusts in equal measure) me when I see in the supermarket a child playing up or having a tantrum over some toy or sweets or something and they start smacking the parent, who then immediately smacks them back, on the arm or hand and says "don't smack".

I mean, what kind of idiot must you be?

Similarly when a child is told "no" for something and when the parent is asked why the reply is "because I say so". You wouldn't speak to an adult that way so don't speak to a child that way either. A child needs to understand 'why' a whole lot more than an adult as they are learning how to interact and live in the world around them. Give them the best lessons you can.

Anybody we meet always comments on how well behaved my daughter is. Because she has an inbuilt proclivity to be so? No. Because I have been ridiculously strict with her? Of course not. Because I have guided her and given her the tools to make the correct decisions on her own.

If you prevented my child from going to the toilet, I am quite confident that she would politely and respectfully suggest to you that she should use the bin in the corner if you prefer...

It may end up being quite demeaning to be outwitted by a 4 year old in that case, but she has been given the tools and the knowledge of their use so it would be pretty hypocritical for someone who hasn't to be teaching her...

 

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On a behavioural level, sometimes "because I say so" is a legitimate response.  As a police officer I spent 30 years answering the "why" question - bottom line was I was old bill, I had a job do, I had the lawful powers to do that job, and "because I say so" was all the explanation the recipient was entitled to.  

"Madam, can you please move your car"

"Why?"

"Madam, can you please move your car"

"Why?"

"Madam, I am a constable in uniform and I am instructing you to move your car.  If you fail to obey you commit an offence"

"But why?"

"You're under arrest..."

Vehicle was in a hideously dangerous position, and to get involved in a protracted discussion about the rights, wrongs and legislation of leaving a vehicle in a dangerous position would be counter to the primary objective of making the road safe and thus protecting life and limb.  

I did 4 years in the Army prior to that.  F*****g about asking "why?" unnecessary could get people hurt or killed.  You did as you were told, when you were told, and with damn good reason.

As adults, as when we were children, we sometimes need to accept that there are higher authorities than us, and when instructed or compelled to do something, be it buy a TV licence, not speed on the roads, or follow the lawful instructions of a uniformed constable, we should just do as we are told - they don't owe you an explanation, and in many cases to take the time out to do so may be detrimental to the reason for issuing the instruction in the first place.  Ask a banal question at an inopportune moment and you can reasonably expect a banal response.

I'm not saying never ask "why?", but be sure to to it a) with a legitimate reason, not as a passive-aggressive form of avoidance in the manner that children do, and b) use some gumption and consider the scenario before wasting your breath and their time.

Going back to the OP, and having shown the post to Mrs Tull, who is herself a retired police officer and newlyish qualified primary school teacher, Mrs Tull was horrified.  A blanket ban on a a bodily function is cruel and degrading behaviour, a breach or Article 3 of the ECHR, and if Mrs Tull knew which school it was should would report the matter to the local authority board/school/trust responsible.

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I'd agree with Luke about teaching the kids something before they are allowed to go to the toilet. That way you explained what your teaching them without them going to the toilet whilst you were teaching and they miss out. Primary school kids aren't as bad compared to secondary school kids. Honestly I just hate seeing secondary school students after school hanging around shops messing about. Yes you may get a few of those kids who mess about in primary school but I can't really see what they'd do if they wanted to go to the toilet

You can't really look at the number or durations of breaks as that feeling to go to the toilet can come at any time. I remember back in primary school some of my friends right after break time had that need to go to the toilet. 

And I'd believe that teachers can have an impact on students like Phil was saying about teachers bringing them up. In year 6 I had 2 teachers. They were both alright but their approach to some things weren't great. If you couldn't see the board and told one of them that they'd just say 'get glasses'  in a disgusting way. They didn't move anyone closer to the board so they couldn't probably learn or even understand what was being taught. I was one of those people but was scared to ask as I didn't want to be talked back in that way. Once I was doing work but I didn't really understand it but just didn't really do anything. The other teacher was in and called me so she can check my work. When she looked she started shouting saying we started doing this at this time and you did this much in this time. I just started crying and she was just saying 'grow up'. I'm just saying you take a different approach to different people. I was a quiet shy person back then well I think I am now. 

 

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I was dyslexic, but not diagnosed until I was an adult.  Of course, in the late 60's and 70's no one cared or likely even knew, so my underwhelming academic performance earned be boll ockings, and even the occasional board rubber between the eyes.  Crying didn't work, so I just withdrew inside and smiled sweetly to them all, and as I grew older (and a lot bigger, a 6'5" 200+ lb teenager mysteriously never got picked on half so badly by the teachers) turned almost into a stubborn belligerence. I'd actively stare them down good and proper when they started in me. Not ideal by any stretch, but the experience gave me a perspective that helped in the army - I could grin and bear pretty much anything, and still come out smiling.  In a warped way I learned than none of it mattered, the sun would still rise in the morning, do your worst...

Fortunately, education has moved on in 5 decades and is supposed to be less confrontational, more evidence based and scientific in its methods, and an unquestioning blanket ban on bodily functions is a small hark back to the needless barbarity of 5 decades ago.

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not a fan being an expecting parent i would be up to the school causing an uproar, stopping a learning child from using the toilet when they need it, i was told no to go the toilet then my bladder would fill and i would be desperate then i couldn't concentrate on the work due to needing a wee. its not on in the slightest if they were going every 10-15 mins then id ask whats the matter with them, if just once every now then then of course let them go. and the point of saying you should of gone at break is useless, if i have a drink or food it takes a goof half hour to an hour to get through the system, a child would be less so yes i would let them go.

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Childhood nightmares come flooding back of me carrying wet undies home in a bag after I wet myself in class following repeated refusal of permission to leave class to go to the loo. To add insult to injury, being told off by the teacher after it happened😠. Re-think your rule please😉

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I can't say I ever had this problem when I was as at school, but l do remember that when others needed to they were allowed to when necessary, l have kids so can give an answer on the other end of it n say if you do stop them n there not trying to take the Mick expect a normal parent to be at your throat for it as very few at my daughter's primary school have been due to this ( only 1 in particular buy us ) but there's no please let them go about it if they need to n it's genuine then as said they should be able to, be ok for 5mins or so unless there desperate, or simply just go in the bin or on there seat n leave the mess to the teacher who cased it to happen then for the parent to be called for a change of clothes n explain why.

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