A PRINCIPAL has responded to a petition calling for a school to stop locking toilets during lesson time.

The petition, which has appeared on Change.org, seeks to ‘end the practice of locking toilets during lessons at Stourport High School’ and has gained more than 350 signatures.

Sara Peace, principal of The Stourport High School and VIth Form College, says school staff lock toilets for 15 minutes at the beginning and end of lessons. This is in an effort to “encourage” students to arrive at their classes on time.

The petition was started by a school parent who has said they are “deeply concerned” about the issue.

They claim that the policy “infringes on basic human rights” and “poses serious health risks to children.”

On the petition web page, which was started on November 21, the organiser said: “My stepson is a student at Stourport High School, and I am deeply concerned about the school's practice of locking toilets during lessons.

“This policy not only infringes on basic human rights but also poses serious health risks to our children.

They added: “We call on the administration of Stourport High School to immediately end this harmful practice and ensure that all students have unrestricted access to toilet facilities during school hours”.

Responding to the petition, the principal said: “The toilets are not locked in lessons.

“They are merely locked for 15 minutes at the beginning and end of lessons to encourage students to arrive to lessons on time.

“At no point are toilets locked for a whole lesson”.

She added: “I have invited the parent who started the petition to come in at any time to suit to see for themselves or talk to me but they have not replied.”