Staff lack guidance on children's toileting problems

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Nearly seven in ten support staff say their nursery or school does not have a policy in place when children soil or wet themselves.

toilet-feet

More than 85 per cent of support staff haven't receieved training on childhood continence

Of the 277 support staff working in maintained and academy nursery and primary schools that took part in the survey, just 31 per cent said their school has a written policy for dealing with incontinence and toilet training problems.

More than 88 per cent of respondents also said they have not received any training on how to deal with childhood continence issues.

When asked in the survey by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) if their job description states they are required to attend to a child that has soiled or wet itself, 70 per cent said no. However, 80 per cent of staff said they are expected to change children when they do have accidents.

Mary Bousted, general secretary of the Association for Teachers and Lecturers (ATL), said, ‘Having to deal with increasing numbers of pupils who have not yet been toilet trained puts extra pressure on education staff when they already have enough pressure on them.

‘It is worrying that such a high number of support staff have received no training in dealing with such issues, yet they are expected to deal with pupils, and even though it is not formally within their job description.

‘Schools need to give staff clear guidance on how to deal with toileting accidents so they know what they are allowed to do and who should be dealing with an incident. It is also important that education staff feel they have support from their school nurse or head, and that they know where to obtain guidance should they need it.’