An article this week, published by News Ltd, has caused debate among parents and teachers, with many angered by a school that used a penalty scheme to stop children from going to the toilet during class.
Using Bellbridge Primary School's "earn and learn" program, students have been fined for taking toilet breaks during class time and have instead been encouraged to use the toilet during meal breaks.
The "earn and learn" program encourages children to work for and earn pretend money, which can be saved to buy different rewards throughout the year.
One mother, Danielle Henderson, said she was furious about her 11-year-old daughter being fined $50 of the reward system money.
"There will always be kids who use the toilet as an excuse to get out of work, but they're the kids who should be targeted, not the whole class," Henderson said.
While it is no doubt painful for any parent to watch their child grow up and be penalised, it seems to me that the teachers here are educating kids on some important life lessons about personal responsibility and the consequences of their actions.
While, of course, children should be able to go to the toilet if they really need to, the children in question are at an age when they can keep tabs on their toilet habits and plan ahead so as not to disturb the rest of the class.
If the kids were 3-year-old kindergarteners still learning how to go to the toilet, then of course that would be ridiculous and cruel. But the kids are between 8 and 11 years old.
It seems that the policy was created because some, not all, students were using toilet breaks as an excuse to get out of class, which became disruptive to everyone in the classroom.
It's a policy that informs kids that their actions have consequences and that if they don't plan their time right or don't follow the rules, the whole group can be affected. Teachers educating children on personal responsibility isn't such a bad thing. That's what school is about, after all.
What do you think about this policy? Share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.
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