LOCKED gates have been placed at the entrance to a school’s toilets, with furious parents comparing it to a prison.
Castle View School, in Foksville Road, Canvey, has confirmed that the gates are locked during the day, with pupils needing a pass to go to the toilets during lessons.
Pictures of the gates have been posted online this week, with parents slamming the move and claiming it has left their children feeling anxious.
It is the latest south Essex school to come under fire over toilet rules, with several locking the toilets during lesson time.
Parents have also claimed there are long queues to use the toilets during break times.
One parent, who asked not to be named, said: “It is against human rights, and is disgusting. It is like they are in a prison.
“It is an absolute nightmare.
“My child felt sick at lunchtime and was left to just stand and queue. My child nearly had to be sick in the hallway, which is so embarrassing.
“These gates are on all the toilet blocks. I don’t know any other secondary schools, that have put an actual physical gate, that can be locked.”
They said that parents had not been told about the move, adding: “We haven’t had any letters or emails about it, it is just so wrong.
“They don’t always open all of them at lunch or break either because a teacher has to open them.
“So there are always long queues, and some days my child doesn’t even eat because there isn’t time to queue for food and the toilet.
“My child has anxiety around going to the toilet now, it is so bad.”
Toilets have been at the centre of controversy in many schools across south Essex recently.
Mayflower High School in Billericay wrote to parents stating toilets would be locked during lesson time, while Shoebury High School previously revealed it had locked toilets “to tackle bad behaviour”, and The Deanes School in Thundersley created “toilet pass cards”.
In response to concerns, Castle View School headteacher Steve Durkin said: “Pupils are able to access all toilets before school, break times, and after school. If a pupil requires access to the toilet during lesson time, they request a pass from their teacher and are allowed access.”