Fury as primary school head forces kids to write statement if they want a wee

Primary pupils are allegedly being told to fill out a “reflection” sheet if they need a wee in classtime.

A new headteacher has also reportedly introduced “fantastic walking”, where children stride around school in a “calm and purposeful” manner with their hands behind their backs.

Dozens of parents have signed a letter to governors expressing concern at changes they say affect kids’ “mental well-being”.

They say new head Rachael Bentham’s alleged toilet request form at Norden primary school, in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, is “bizarre”.

The families said: “It has been reported to parents that children are being denied toilet breaks in lessons, or if they appear really desperate and have gone anyway, they have to fill in a reflection sheet.

“Why would you wish to stigmatise children with having to fill in a reflection sheet about a bodily function some children are only just learning to control?”

They added that the alleged “fantastic walking” policy “belongs in Victorian times or in a military academy”.

They said: “Asking children to walk with their hands behind their backs represents a significant risk to their health and safety. Children are not fully co-ordinated and use their hands and arms to balance.”

One parent said changes have “left kids not wanting to go to school because it is like a jail or they say that ‘all the fun has gone’.”

The school is also said to have started rewarding good behaviour with cookies, which parents fear may fuel obesity.

They also allege that Ms Bentham shut the school’s Parent Teacher Association Facebook account because she “didn’t like a comment”.

Governors said that Ms Bentham was “committed to working with the parents to provide the best quality of education”.

Governors added: “The letter publicly makes a number of allegations about the integrity and conduct of our headteacher, allegations that could potentially result in further action being taken against individual parents/carers.”

A Rochdale Council spokesman said: “We are aware of the issues that parents have raised and we are dealing with them via appropriate procedures.”

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