PUPIL power has forced a school to u-turn over a controversial move to lock toilets during class times to crack down on 'inappropriate behaviour'.

New head teacher Nicola MacGlashan, who has just taken over at Williamwood High School, caused a stir among young people with new rules on toilet access.

Teenagers reacted with fury to the changes, which meant they had to ask permission to access toilets during certain times.

One pupil set up an online petition, which has seen more than 3000 signatures in less than 24 hours with Glasgow pupils signing their names in support.  

READ MORE: Williamwood parents claim school 'failed pupils' during lockdown

But East Renfrewshire Council has now said the school is back-pedalling on the decision and toilets will remain open.

An East Renfrewshire Council spokesperson said: “At no time were any pupils denied access to toilet facilities during the school day.

"A new system was introduced in an attempt to maximise teaching time in classes and also to minimise the opportunity for inappropriate behaviour, which, on occasion, can take place in toilet facilities.

"The change meant that toilets closer to classrooms were available during the course of the teaching day, with the toilets within the communal ‘street area’ only open before school, at lunch and break times and after school.

"Given the concerns raised, these toilets will now remain open throughout the school day, although pupils will still be encouraged to use the toilets closer to classrooms between lessons to ensure any lost teaching time is minimised.

"The situation will be kept under review.”

Mrs MacGlashan has moved to Williamwood, one of Scotland's top performing schools in the annual league tables, from nearby Woodfarm High School.

The pupil petition says young people will not take the change lying down and asks the teacher to give them respect.

It reads: "It. Is. Basic. Child. Wellfare.  

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"You as adults are meant to protect us. To look after us and keep us safe.

"But you deny us a safe place to use the bathroom in a place where we are to assume we are being given the best care.

"By taking away bathrooms you leave people who are anxious around crowds of people in bathrooms going six hour school days without going to the bathroom, for those with medical conditions you are making it harder to access a bathroom in a quick instance.

"So dear williamwood. Give us back our bathrooms, give us back our rights.

"If you are a student I can only ask for you to share this petition with your family, friends and other students.

"We won't take these new rules.

"If our staff want respect, they must give us respect first.   

"I do want to mention the wonderful hospitality department who are allowing people to use their staff base toilets with no questions asked.

"They are wonderful people and deserve all the respect they get."