Toilet training children should not be left to school teachers, Ofsted chief warnsIvy Madziva
The body’s chief inspector Amanda Spielman said it is parents’ responsibility to ensure basic development milestones like this are met.
(Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash)
Teachers are being left to toilet train four-year-old children at schools, the Ofsted chief has warned.
The body’s chief inspector Amanda Spielman said it is parents’ responsibility to ensure basic development milestones like this are met, and restated that an increasing number of children are coming to class unable to use the loo or communicate properly.
Ms Spielman is expected to deliver her second annual report later this week.
“This is difficult for teachers, disruptive for other children and has a terrible social impact on the children affected,” she will say.
“This is wrong. Toilet training is the role of parents and carers and should not be left to schools. Only in the most extreme cases should parents be excused from this most basic of parenting tasks.”
Ms Spielman is expected to speak about the increasingly difficult responsibility afforded to teachers to tackle issues such as obesity, bullying and child neglect when she addresses an audience of education professionals in central London this week.
She will add that expecting schools to absorb the entire care of pupils is not only distracting them from the task of teaching young pupils core skills, but also failing to solve the issues.
“Our education and care services don’t exist in isolation from the local areas they serve. They are and should be a central part of our communities,”she will say.
“But being part of a community means being very clear what your responsibilities are, and what issues, however worthy, can only be tackled beyond the school, college or nursery gates.”
She will also reference the recent rise in knife crime with the following:
“Most of our schools are safe, and we fully support measures, including zero tolerance policies on the carrying of knives, to keep them that way.
“But beyond that, while schools can play a role in educating young people about the danger of knives, they cannot be a panacea for this particular societal ill.
“Instead, preventing knife crime requires all local safeguarding partners to work together to protect children from harm whilst the relevant agencies tackle criminal activity and bring to justice youths and adults who cause harm to children.”
Her words follow that of Education Secretary Damian Hinds earlier this year, when he said that “society asks more of schools than it did a generation ago”.
He cited that teachers are expected not just to teach, but to monitor children’s health, home life and check for signs of radicalisation, too. He did not, however, mention the ever decreasing resources schools have with which to properly support teachers in doing so.
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