I'm stunned, truly stunned

by something I read in yesterday's paper.
I'll copy it here, word for word, I won't change a thing.


Nappy kids
at school

  Rising numbers of British children are still in nappies when they start primary school.
  Staff say they are increasingly forced to disrupt classes to change pupils or clear up "accidents" because parents think toilet training is a school's job.
  Teachers also report that children are generally less independent, needing help with putting on coats and changing for physical education."

I'm telling you, I almost choked on my coffee!
How does such a thing happen?? 
Since when is it a school's job to toilet train your children??
I'm not including special needs children in my rant, they have extenuating circumstances,
I believe the article is about normal children of school age who are exhibiting much less independence than is common.

I'm surprised the teachers haven't called for strike action or a huge pay increase or something.
How can parents think this is right?


  1. We ARE talking about four and five year old kids, aren't we? Frankly, I think that unless a child has diagnosed special needs, it should be a given that they are toilet trained before they get to school?

    And, really. What parent in his or her right mind wants to be dealing with this at HOME, either? I do not get it at all. I cannot believe this is happening here, or someone would have written about it.

    There is a screening for kindergarten (5 year olds) in the USA, so perhaps this problem is addressed? I don't know.

    Wow. I'm with you here, all the way. And why would parents WANT teachers to be dealing with their kids on such an intimate level as potty training?

    Ugh. I HAVE heard many reports of the immaturity of kids, and an increasing dependence. We over-program our children's activities from waking up until bedtime, it seems.


  2. I am surprised at how late my niece became toilet trained. It seems the modern method is to not push the matter but let nature take its course. Excluding medical problems, how can a five year old not be continent? A four year old for the matter.

  3. Hi River,

    I would take this sensationalist headline with a pinch of salt. I had not heard of it, so I did a little search and discovered that the source is the Daily Mail, a newspaper that claims not to be a tabloid but is - claiming that we (Britain) are being invaded by terrorists and all manner of ridiculous stories to keep us all living in a state of fear.

    Mrs PM has been known to buy it and when she does, I step up onto my soapbox and rant so loud that I'm surprised you haven't been woken up in Oz.

    It is a terrible paper that is making people believe that Britain is a bad place.

    Don't get me started ...




  4. Hi again River,

    Here are a couple of examples of Daily Mail scare-mongering:








    I can find zillions of examples if you want them.

    I'll stop now and put my soapbox away. I'm scaring the cats - who might actually give me an horrendous disease.

    And I'm a hypochondriac too.

    Sorry for the soapbox ...




  5. Well, I can say for one that I am GLAD if that is what it was. Somehow, it did not make sense to this YANK, but one could wish that, on BOTH sides of the pond, tabloids would shut the bleep up!

    Perhaps a trend is that three students in a district instead of just one had a problem...

  6. I find this hard to believe that children aren't toilet trained before starting kindergarden or primary school, must be a lot of lazy parents out there. It really sounds like a media beat up to sell more papers, which is more likely :-).

  7. I have everything crossed that it is a media beat up. Except they generally require a small fact or two to beat up. Aaaargh.

  8. My brothers wife is Indonesian, they have their kids toilet trained and nappy free by 12 months of age. (even at night) She thinks Australia's way of having kids trained by 2 or 3 is disgusting...
    Frankly this is laziness and comes as a result of many years of parental standards dropping.

  9. Kids aren't allowed to attend KINDER here unless they are completely trained (special needs excluded of course)

  10. I'm with PlasMan - if it's the Daily Mail, then maybe *one* teacher once had *one* student arrive at school who had maybe forgotten to take off his/her night time training pants. Maybe....

    ...As for teachers (and nurses) I think that they should be paid as highly as politicians, lawyers and doctors. It's a shame what 'value' we put on such truly valuable professions.

    OK, I'll step down from my high horse now.

  11. JeanetteLS; the article clearly states primary school. That's definitely 5 and 6 year olds. I find it so hard to believe that any parent would want their child still in nappies past the age of three at the most.

    Andrew; I've noticed the modern method and it's probably fine up to a point, since force is never the answer when it comes to training children, in anything, not just with toilet training, but there are limits. For starters, think of the high cost of disposable nappies, which is what many parents use these days.

    Plasman; aha! I probably should have checked the source....and if I knew how, maybe I would have.

    JeanetteLS; maybe I should give up reading the papers again.....if our "solid" newspaper is going to start picking up bits of sensationalist "news" I'll save my money and read fiction novels instead.

    Windsmoke; if Plasman is to be believed, and I have no reason to doubt him, this is just a blown up piece of sensationalism from a tabloid paper known for skewing the facts.

    EC; I'm also hoping it was just a media beat up.

    Tempo; I have an Asian sister-in-law and can testify that all of her children were toilet trained by their first birthday or very soon after. My own four were completely reliable by their second birthday. It helped that their training took place in summer.

    Kelley; Apart from this article being a bit of blown-out-of-proportion sensationalism, I can't see any school taking on kids who aren't toilet trained. Something I probably should have thought of before racing to the keyboard.

    Kath Lockett; more and more I'm hoping this was the case. Then again there's no smoke without fire, so maybe it's happened more than once. But wouldn't a parent be told to keep the child out of school until reliably trained?
    I agree teachers and nurses etc aren't paid highly enough for the work they do teaching and nurturing our chldren.

  12. Having worked in primary schools I can back up this article to an extent. Whilst none of the kids came in nappies, there were some who weren't toilet trained. Instead the parents, knowing they would soil their clothes, would put 3-4 changes in their bags so that the teacher could clean them up. Disgusting.

  13. I love the DM for it's wild gossip.

    Toilet training during the day is easy when you're home with them but night time is harder. Full bladder has to connect with brain to wake up and go or be large enough to last all night.
    My son was so proud when we had 3 nights of dry bedding.

  14. Fenstar; that is sad to hear. Teachers aren't required to do this as part of their job description. As far as I'm concerned any child who routinely comes to school untrained and with spare clothing should be sent home and asked to not start school until fully toilet trained.

    JahTeh; I don't read the DM, so I have no idea what it usually carries in the way of stories. This little snippet was reprinted in our daily Advertiser.
    I found that two of my kids were dry during the night at the same time as the day training. About 18 months to two years. The others wet their beds for a while as did their uncle and several other relatives. It's a family thing,lots of bedwetters on their dad's side, one on mine, but they were completely dry at night by four.

  15. SO glad I'm not a teacher anymore ...


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