A CLAMPDOWN on use of toilets by Parkside School students has caused a storm of protests.

Parents and students claim the new policy – introduced following misuse and mess left by some students – means hundreds of girls have only a short time to queue for just eight cubicles.

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Several students and parents contacted the Keighley News to complain. Protests centred on the adverse effect on teenage girls having their periods, who must prove they have a ‘medical condition’ and collect a key.

One unnamed complainant claimed: “Many girls have been asked to show their sanitary products in order to get the key to go to the toilet.”

At one point during the height of this month’s protests it is understood a large group of girls swarmed into the toilets chanting “lock us in!”.

A mother of a year 11 student said her daughter had started an online petition against the new rules, which soon attracted 140 signatures.

The mother said: “I’m told that there is only one toilet block open at break and lunchtime, which has eight toilets in them. This on its own is not enough for over 500 girls.

“We live in a civilised country, surely it is a human right have access to sanitary facilities when at school all day?”

Another mother said her sixth-former daughter had been refused access to the toilet during her free period by a staff member.

She added: “The disgusting behaviour in the toilets was unacceptable but was carried out by a very small minority of pupils. The rest of the student should not be punished as a result.”

Parkside School declined to comment when approached by the Keighley News.

An email sent to a parent by deputy head Bernard Tague said the school took safeguarding its students extremely seriously.

He wrote: “Due to the intolerable actions of a few individuals and the unacceptable state of school toilets, we are having to make some changes.

“We are implementing stricter rules to make sure students stay in their lessons. Students should not be using the toilet facilities during lesson time unless they have a medical condition and associated pass.

“Students with toilet passes can report to reception to ask for the key to the toilets and no other students should be using the toilets outside these times. Entry into the toilets will be supervised at break and lunch time.”