Stories & News News Pupil protest at secondary school over toilet access A dispute around pupil access to toilets received widespread coverage in the national press last week. Pupils at Bedale High School, North Yorkshire, claimed that they weren’t being allowed free access to the toilet during lessons and at other times. A protest at the school by up to 40 students resulted in police being called but they advised staff it wasn’t a police matter. What caused the protest? Since the furore erupted, North Yorkshire County Council have stated that students who need the toilet during lessons will be allowed on request. A new behaviour code issued by the school just before half term reminded students that toilets are freely accessible during specific periods at lunchtime and break time but that students who need the toilet during lessons, or need access for medical reasons, will always be given access on request. Toilets are therefore accessible at all times. ERIC's Right to Go Campaign Juliette Randall, ERIC’s CEO said: “The situation at Bedale High School highlights how important it is for schools to have a free access toilet policy which is well communicated to pupils, staff and parents. Pupils need to feel comfortable asking to use the toilets even if that means during lesson time. We would urge schools and parents to use the free resources contained within ERIC’s Right to Go campaign to make sure that all children and teenagers are being well supported and are provided with high quality and accessible school toilets.” Help and information if this affects you Read our suggestions of what to do to get your school to re-open the toilets during lessons. Our Help at school guidance answers the question of locked toilets at school and other commonly raised scenarios. If you have more questions about toileting policies in schools and early years settings, please contact our bowel and bladder helpline. The legislation that covers school toilets and washing facilities is the Schools Premises and Regulations (SPRs) 2012. ERIC is also running a training course on managing children’s continence problems in schools which anyone can attend.