Schools across the country have been rocked by another wave of ‘TikTok protests’ as students continue to rebel against their teachers over the introduction of restrictive new rules.
Last week, there was a wave of demonstrations at schools in Yorkshire, Cornwall and Lincolnshire, as students voiced their displeasure at a series of changes to uniform and toilet policies.
The protests are believed to have been staged on TikTok and Snapchat and have since attracted millions of views, leading to more riots across the country as the trend rapidly gains traction.
While specific complaints vary from school to school, the unifying theme seems to be the introduction of increasingly strict regulations on bathroom access, which have been criticized as ‘prison rules’ by students and parents alike.
At Weston Secondary School in Southampton, students were chanting ‘toilet rights’ over the introduction of unisex toilets, which female students say made them uncomfortable.
Children have reported concern about single-sex toilets at school after their introduction in September, but claim they have been ignored by staff.
Pupil Cloe, 14, told Mail Online: ‘We don’t think it’s fair, the girls in our school don’t feel comfortable. People think it’s funny to unlock the doors while you’re inside.
‘We are trying to tell the teachers that this is not fair. We’ve tried talking to them before we make a protest, but they’re just ignoring it.’
Another 14-year-old added: ‘We’ve talked to the director about this before and they just tell you what you want to hear and don’t do anything about it.
One female student said ‘female emergencies’ meant they should be able to use the bathroom without having to wait ‘up to two hours’ for a break or lunch break.
‘You also can’t leave class to go to the bathroom, which isn’t fair to girls who are menstruating.
‘If you have a female emergency, you should be allowed to go to the bathroom when you need it.’
Meanwhile, a school in Blackpool has denied allegations of a ‘mass riot’ after students staged a protest in defiance of the school’s ground rules.
Stephen Cooke, head of Unity Academy Blackpool, said the uprisings were part of a social media trend that had seen students ‘ranting’ about issues that concern them, not conforming and going to classes as they normally would.
Cooke said the trend started last week and has since picked up momentum over the weekend.
He added, ‘The student voice is important to the academy and to ensure that all students have the opportunity to share concerns, the form time was extended this morning by ten minutes to provide an opportunity for students to share these concerns, that colleagues committed to answer later this week.
‘Despite offering opportunities this morning, a very small number of the school population (less than 5 percent) chose to participate in a protest by not going to class after the lunch break.
‘The number of students quickly decreased and they were supervised by the staff at all times. The ‘protest’ lasted for around 15 minutes before being brought to a calm conclusion by staff.’
Elsewhere at Shenfield High School in Essex, footage showed students stomping on books and overturning chairs in the school’s hallways, although it’s unclear exactly what the students were protesting.
Last week, riot police were called to Richmond School in North Yorkshire after students started dropping fire extinguishers and breaking down doors.
Local reports suggest that a tree was set on fire, teachers were pushed and windows were smashed during the rampage.
A parent of a pupil at Haven High in Lincolnshire, who also saw protests last week, said the unrest came after children were told they could not use the toilet during lessons.
They said: ‘For some strange reason, the principal seems to be playing prison rules at school, where hallways and toilet blocks are locked during school hours.
‘If they need the bathroom or anything, they have to go through this teacher and that teacher, it’s like a prison there. They cannot wear any type of jewelry or makeup. If cell phones are on, they will be confiscated until after school.
‘All the students protested and went to the school field. Some teachers were trying to get them back, but they were saying ‘no’.’
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