Should Teachers have the right to Deny a Students need to use the Bathroom – No

I don’t understand how anyone could vote “Yes”.  My daughter was in 5th grade when she was repeatedly denied use of the restroom.  Unfortunately she did not tell me what was going on until after she was vomiting from a severe urinary tract infection, which then moved to her kidneys.  I contacted the school’s principal regarding the issue and he assured me he would handle it.  My daughter missed WEEKS of school due to this infection and when she returned, she had a physician’s order to allow her to use the restroom whenever needed.  Despite the physician’s order and the principal’s assurance that the matter had been taken care of, my daughter was again denied use of the restroom.  I again called the principal, who became extremely angry at the teacher in question and assured me again that the matter would be taken care of.  I assured him that while I was playing nice now, I would not be if the teacher denied my daughter again.  I let him know that if anyone in that school building denied use of the restroom to my daughter, I would not be calling him again, I would be calling a lawyer.  Needless to say, my daughter did not have any further problems.  The physician’s letter has been made a permanent fixture in her records and goes with her from school to school.  So far, there have been no problems and she has just entered 9th grade.

My son was in 3rd grade when he was denied use of the restroom.  His class had been taken to another classroom, where there was a teacher he had never met before, while his teacher was busy elsewhere.  The teacher repeatedly denied his requests, insisting he sit still while she read the class a story.  When she finished reading the story, she looked at my son and stated “Ok you can go now”.  Well of course it was too late.  My son went to the restroom and when he returned, several of the boys in his class humiliated and made fun of him.  Instead of intervening, the teacher simply sent him off to the nurse’s office.  He was given a pair of jeans that were way too large to wear.  I was not called at home to bring him dry clothes, even though I thought I had a good relationship with the nurse and she knew I was at home and could be at the school within 5 minutes.  My son sat in wet underwear in jeans that were too large.  When he got off the school bus, a long line of cars were waiting both ways and his pants fell down to his ankles.  They were that big.  He was incredibly humiliated and embarrassed that so many strangers had seen him in his wet underwear with the pants around his ankles.  

I immediately drove to the school and demanded to speak with the principal.  He wasn’t there.  I spoke to the nurse, who very rudely defended her actions and had the attitude that the incident was entirely my son’s fault.  I spoke with my son’s regular teacher, who then called in the teacher responsible.  The teacher was extremely rude and disrespectful to me and refused to apologize to my son.  She stated she refused to let my son use the bathroom because – remember this part – they are REQUIRED to send students in twos to the restroom and that would have meant another boy in the class wouldn’t have been able to hear the story.  Not a teaching lesson, but a story to fill in the time.  Now, once that teacher was done reading the story and she told my son he could go to the restroom, she did NOT send another student with him.  Why wouldn’t she send another student with him, since she told me they are REQUIRED to do so?  

The following day, I spoke with the principal on the phone, who assured me he would speak to the teacher in question and that my son would never be in her classroom again for the remainder of the year.  He did not call me back to let me know that he’d spoken to the teacher.  Weeks later, my son told me that yes, his class had been sent down to that teacher’s classroom twice.

What I feel is important to note here is that the school system my children are in is rated fairly high.  The town brags about our school system, saying it’s one of the finest.   Yet this is what they subject our children to.  It’s inhumane and it sickens me that nothing is ever done to stop it.