|Press release - Guidance on school toilets published - 25 April 2007|
Department of Education publishes school toilets guidance
|We are delighted to announce that the DfES (Department for Education and Skills) has published guidance on school toilet design and maintenance. ERIC has been involved throughout the project and warmly welcomes the elevation of school toilets to a priority area for schools. |
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The toilet designs recommend (as one possible option) unisex washbasin areas - not unisex toilets. Toilet cubicle areas are designed to be singe-sex and separate. Currently many schools lock ALL the school toilets (some even during break and lunchtime) and install CCTV inside the toilets. A unisex washbasin area separated from the corridor with a glass wall or open to a circulation area is designed to help teachers and pupils spot any anti-social behaviour, encourage schools to leave at least one set of toilets unlocked during lessons (ideally a set sited near the school office so there is adult traffic), do away with the need for CCTV, and encourage pupils to feel confident about using the toilets
The guidance Standard specifications, layouts and dimensions 3 - Toilets in Schools sets out the standards of performance for school buildings in the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme and shows how they might be delivered through some design examples. The aim is to disseminate good practice and avoid ‘reinventing the wheel’ every time a school is building is designed, so that school toilets can be consistently high quality environments, offering best whole-life value for money. The Government will expect it to be adopted in the majority of situations.
The guidance will be kept under review and updated as necessary.
You can download “Toilet Design Publication April 2007’
here following this link from the Teachernet website
If this link fails, please let us know.
25 April 2007 -
Press release from Partnerships for Schools
New guidance published today governing the specification of toilet blocks in secondary schools will help tackle bullying in secondary schools. New designs to be used in all BSF schools will make toilets more attractive, cleaner and safer for pupils to use.
The Guidance, Toilets in Schools, recommends making hand-washing areas more visible and placing toilet blocks opposite classrooms and staff areas enabling them to be supervised “passively”. With the fear of bullies using toilets to threaten and mistreat others reduced, pupils will be more likely to drink water at school and so keep hydrated throughout the day.
Tim Byles, Chief Executive for Partnerships for Schools said:
“There is a very real issue around bullying in schools, with toilet blocks recognised as a hot spot for bullies to target those they chose to intimidate and threaten.
In a bid to avoid having to visit the toilet at school, many young people have developed bladder and bowel problems, while others simply refuse to drink water, exposing them to the risk of becoming dehydrated. This is an unacceptable situation, but thanks to today’s new guidance, cramped, dirty and vandalised toilets can become a thing of the past. Toilets in BSF schools will no longer provide bullies with places that lend themselves all too readily to anti-social behaviour.”
Beverley Leeson, Deputy Director from ERIC, the organisation behind the ‘Bog Standard’ campaign for better toilets for pupils, welcomed the guidance and said:
“ERIC warmly welcomes the guidance to improve the standard of school toilet design, an area of school design that has been overlooked for far too long. School toilets are often the most concerning issue for pupils and the impact on their health and well being can be serious and far-reaching. The very important focus on encouraging pupils to drink more during the school day must be accompanied by having toilets that pupils are happy and able to use when they need to. Good toilet design and high standards of maintenance can go a long way to reducing or eradicating problems such as bullying and vandalism. Toilets that pupils can be proud of also reduce rates of absenteeism, boost self-esteem, improve relations between pupils and teachers, and encourage willingness and ability to learn. We very much hope that the proposals in this guidance will be widely adopted for the benefit of pupils.”
As well as overhauling the design of toilets in secondary schools, the Building Schools for the Future programme is seeking to address anti-social behaviours more broadly through design features such as avoiding dead-end corridors, an absence of dark corners and generally increased visibility of all parts of the school.
Tim Byles said:
“Combating bullying in its entirety will never of course be solved overnight just by changing the physical design of a school. It is a far more complex challenge than that and as such one which requires a multi-pronged approach. It is, of course, the unenviable task of the teaching profession to manage bullying within individual schools, but the contribution that BSF makes is to make that management easier within the confines of the school gates.”
Notes to Editors:
1.The new Guidance – Toilets in Schools – is part of a series of Standard Specifications, Layouts and Dimensions DfES guidance notes produced for the Building Schools for the Future programme.
2.The significant increases in funding associated with the BSF programme introduce scope for using standardised specifications, layouts and dimensions (SSLD) to speed up design and construction, reduce whole life costs and deliver consistently high quality, sustainable and better value school buildings. We have consulted widely to ensure that such benefits can be delivered in a way that is acceptable to both the design community and the construction industry, and which does not stifle creativity and design flair while ensuring a minimum specification in all our future schools.
3.Tim Byles announced the publication of the Guidance at the 5th Annual Education Partnerships Conference in London.
4.More details of the Bog Standard campaign can be accessed through: www.bog-standard.org
5.Building Schools for the Future (BSF) is the largest single schools capital investment programme for over 50 years. The aim is to rebuild or renew every one of England's 3,500 state secondary schools during the 15-year lifetime of the programme.
6.Partnerships for Schools (PfS) is the delivery agency for Building Schools for the Future. PfS was established in April 2004 as a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB), and is operated and funded under a joint venture between DfES and Partnerships UK.
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