School Makes Children Pay to Use the Toilet



What is it with obsessing over the learning time lost due to toilet breaks? Either these breaks are legitimate in which case it is our duty to ensure that our students have access to the toilet, or it is an excuse the child makes in order to get out of the classroom. If it is the latter, the teacher should see it not as an abuse of trust, but rather as constructive feedback. The child is clearly telling the teacher that the lesson is boring. Teachers that successfully engage their students don’t have an issue with needless toilet interruptions.

For those schools considering toilet policies such as making students forfeit class money or privileges in order to get a toilet break, I wish to remind them of the following:

1. Teachers should not play games about something as serious as a child needing to go to the toilet.

2. Children should never be made to feel guilty for frequent trips to the bathroom.

3. Surely there are bigger fish to fry than time wasted on toilet breaks.

4. How would teachers like it if they were charged for toilet breaks during staff meetings?

5. Schools share too many similarities to prisons as it is, yet you don’t hear of prisoners having to give up privileges in order to go to the toilet.


I am glad that a class rule obligating students to part with their fake class money in order to claim a toilet break was scrapped. What disappoints me is how that crazy rule was allowed to be enacted in the first place:

An Oregon elementary school came under fire this week after one parent objected to a policy requiring students in some classrooms to “pay” to use the bathroom during class. (The policy has since been revoked.)

Melissa Dalebout, the mother of first-grader Lily, told local news outlet KATU that her daughter had an accident recently at Cascades Elementary School because she didn’t want to use her “Super Pro” bucks to go the bathroom.

The bucks were a form of fake money that children at the Lebanon, Ore., school earned for good behavior. Bucks that weren’t spent on bathroom breaks were redeemable for toys at the school store.

“I just feel my children should not be punished for having to use the bathroom,” Dalebout told KATU.

Mommyish blogger Maria Guido wondered if this type of policy might send the wrong message to kids.

“I don’t want my child to develop strange bathroom habits because teachers have him on a bathroom rewards program,” Guido wrote. “Not okay. I understand rewarding good behavior, but this bathroom break policy does not sit well with me. If my child wet his pants because of this, I would be pissed.”

Cascades Principal Tami Volz told KATU that the Super Pro payment plan, as well as strategies where excessive bathroom users lost part of their recess time, were imperative for classroom management.


Click on the link to read When Standing Up for Your Students Gets You Fired

Click on the link to read Girl Faces Expulsion for Being a Victim of Bullying

Click on the link to read Cancer Sufferer Claims she was Banned from Daughter’s School Because of her “Smell”

Click on the link to read Top 10 Most Unusual School Bans

Click on the link to read Rules that Restrict the Teacher and Enslave the Student


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2 Responses to “School Makes Children Pay to Use the Toilet”

  1. John Tapscott Says:

    When the tail wags the dog, the dog’s tail becomes the issue and the dog is forgotten.

    I have seen children at school risk “having an accident” rather than miss out on learning. I have also seen children frequently request the toilet when they are not learning.

    Teaching and learning are two different functions. The teacher teaches, the student learns. This is something the command and control merchants who hold power in most of our education systems fail to recognise. Furthermore the student does not necessarily learn what the teacher intends to teach. Students who frequently request the toilet have learned that it is a convenient means of escaping torture.

    It is not necessary to coerce children to learn. The necessity for coercion arises only when teaching is forced by an ignorant system. Fake money, ticks on the chart, stickers, are all a form of coercion that would not be needed if education ran along natural lines.

    I long to see the day when coercive practices are eliminated from education altogether.

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