Skip to content

We are an Operation Encompass School

Call us: 01274 874 550

“Let Your Light Shine!” - Matthew 5:16

Shirley Avenue




BD19 4NA


Toileting and Continence Policy

Links to the school vision – ‘Let your Light Shine’ (Matthew 5:16) Steps to success:

Respect – children will be treated with respect in all aspects of toileting.

Resilience – children will be encouraged to persevere in developing their toileting skills


Achieving continence is a developmental milestone usually reached within the context of learning in the home before a child transfers to a nursery/school setting. However, for some children entering school, the skill of independent toileting has not been fully acquired and some will have no awareness. These need to be dealt with sensitively as some children may never achieve full independence. Our aims are that children will become ‘school ready’ and be able to manage their own ‘personal hygiene’.  Both of these aims will be addressed with a child’s individual capabilities in mind.

Principles of the Policy

The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum includes Personal, Social and Emotional Development with the aspect of Managing Self, during which it is expected that by the end of Reception, children ‘manage their own basic hygiene and personal needs successfully, including dressing and going to the toilet independently.’ (EYFS, 2021).  On some occasions, children come to our setting in nappies. We support children sensitively; with dignity and respect in this matter. From time to time some children will have accidents and need to be attended to. Spare clothing is available if necessary and parents are asked to return this as soon as possible.  If a child has needed help with meeting intimate care needs, this is treated as confidential and shared with the parents in person at the end of the day.

Staff Training

All Early Years staff are knowledgeable about intimate care/personal care. They are aware of their responsibilities, relevant policies and procedures in place (including adhering to Safeguarding, Health and Safety, Confidentiality). All Early Years staff are CRB/DBS checked and have received training for very specific intimate care procedures where relevant. If a child begins school in nappies, regardless of SEND, a care plan will be created for them.  Staff will follow the child’s care plan and they undertake their duties in a professional manner at all times. They are fully aware of best practice, including hygiene.

Health and Safety

Nappy changing will follow the same procedures and precautions already in place for dealing with spillages of bodily fluids, e.g. when a child accidentally wets or soils himself, or is sick whilst on the premises.

  • Staff to wear aprons and disposable gloves whilst changing a child;
  • Nappies are to be disposed of in the continence waste disposal unit in the staff toilet located outside Early Years;
  • Changing mat is to be cleaned after use;
  • Hot water and soap available to wash hands as soon as changing is done;
  • Paper towels available to dry hands.


Early Years have a toilet area with a large space available to change children if they have had an accident. Staff should be aware that:

  • changing should take place in an appropriate area, where privacy and dignity can be maintained during the process
  • a changing mat is used, for able children, they should be encouraged to stand where possible to increase independence,
  • the child should not be made to feel uncomfortable
  • Staff to be provided with disposable gloves; a disposable apron, wipes to clean the child and nappy bags.
  • Child to be encouraged to participate in the changing process as appropriate e.g. wiping themselves, pulling up their pants, offering their foot for trousers etc.


The normal process of assisting with personal care, e.g. changing a nappy should not raise child protection concerns. There are no regulations that state that a second member of staff must be available to supervise the process to ensure that abuse does not take place. All staff appointed at Gomersal St. Mary’s CE School have rigorous CRB/DBS checks which are carried out to ensure the safety of children and staff. Where children are still in nappies on entering school, a care plan will be put in place and the procedures for changing a child will be discussed with parents.  The member of staff changing the child needs to record details on the log

Partnership Working

Issues around toileting can be discussed with the teachers during the admissions and transition process.  Parents can arrange meetings with staff to discuss any concerns they may have and the involvement of other agencies if necessary, e.g. Health Visitor/School Nurse/Continence Service.

The Parents/Carers

  • Agreeing to change the child at the latest possible time before coming to school;
  • Providing spare nappies and a change of clothes;
  • Understanding and agreeing the school procedures followed during changing;
  • Agreeing to inform the school should the child have any marks/nappy rash;
  • Agreeing how often the child should be routinely changed if the child is in school for the full day and who will be doing the changing;
  • Agreeing to review the arrangements, in discussion with the school, should this be necessary.

The School

  • Agreeing to change the child should they soil themselves or become wet;
  • Agreeing how often the child should be routinely changed if the child is in school for the full day and who will be changing them;
  • Agreeing to report to the Head Teacher, the designated safeguarding lead, should the child be distressed or if marks and rashes are cause for concern;
  • Agreeing to review arrangements, in discussion with parents/carers, should this be necessary.
  • Agreeing to implement a care plan if this is required.
  • Agreeing to follow a timed toilet training programme with support and in the same routine as the parents (when appropriate).
  • Agreeing that the changing experience is a positive one and that is safe and comfortable for all. Whilst the child is having their needs met, it is treated as a time to converse and promote their personal development.

Inclusion and Equality

Children entering the school that have not achieved continence or developed independent toileting skills will not be discriminated against in relation to their admission to school and they will be supported with their toileting needs to help develop concern for their own personal hygiene, independence and well-being. Cultural and religious values are respected when planning for their care. We seek to engage in regular communication with parents, SENCO and outside agencies where necessary, to monitor and review a child’s care plan together.