The mother of the teenager called the school and asked for an explanation but she was astonished by their response.
Despite the numerous awareness programs, menstruation is still stigmatized. To make matters worse, educational institutions too contribute to the continuation of such draconian beliefs through their bizarre actions. One school's attitude towards a female student has sparked outrage after the institution denied toilet access to the girl during her period and went on to punish her for using the toilet.
“Schoolgirl, 15, 'stopped from using toilet while on period' then put in seclusion” - Metro https://t.co/VmPbwDn8jP— Labour Left Grassroots (@LabGrassroots) May 31, 2021
According to Metro, a 15-year-old girl from Valley Park School in Maidstone, Kent, was refused permission to use the toilet even after she implored her teacher. Reportedly, the girl was asked to "sit back down." However, the student was persistent. The helpless girl was even forced to spell out the reason for her urgency to use the toilet. Despite her best efforts, the teacher did not budge. So, the student decided to go against the word of her teacher, which led to her being punished.
Speaking of the incident, the mother of the student, whose identity has been kept anonymous stated, "When my daughter first told me what happened I thought, 'There’s no way you’d get put into seclusion for just asking to go to the toilet,' but I got the same story from my daughter as I did the teacher."
The furious mother went on to say that her daughter had never got into trouble in the past. She stated that she was shocked by the school's attitude. "I’ve never been called about her behavior before and she has never been in trouble, so I think it’s absolutely ridiculous," said the mother.
Infuriated and upset by her child's experience, the mother called up the school to ask them for an explanation. Unfortunately, the school's response was appalling. Instead of accepting their mistake, they sided with the teacher and their "individual judgment."
"I spoke to the head of year and said, 'From one woman to another, surely you understand why she left the classroom?'" said the mother.
She continued, "She even told the teacher the reason for the problem. The member of staff just said to me as a teacher, if she needed to go to the toilet, she wouldn’t be able to leave the classroom unattended."
The mother added, "There’s no way I believe a teacher would have stood there for the whole hour lesson when they needed to go in the same situation. They would have called a superior or a colleague to cover them."
Meanwhile, headteacher Margaret Hutchinson responded to the incident and said that the school would "never deny any student access to our bathroom facilities." She also claimed that the school encourages students to use the toilet during the breaks.
"We do ask that students make every effort to do this during break and lunchtime to minimize disruption to lessons," said Hutchinson.
Cover image (representational): Getty Images (Photo by deimagine)