A protest has taken place by pupils at The Radclyffe School encouraged by similar activism shared on TikTok.

Pupils can be heard on social media videos chanting ‘open the toilets’ with captions stating that toilets are ‘locked up’ during lessons.

The Radclyffe School confirmed that the protests did take place, and that school policy is that most toilets are locked during lesson times, with most toilets only being unlocked at break times.

Exemptions apply for those with medical needs, who can use medical room toilets, according to the school.

Some pupils have been punished for their role in the protests, but the school said it is open to ‘explore the possibility of adapting’ some of the toilet rules.

A spokesperson for The Radclyffe School said: “The school can confirm that a small minority of our students took part in a brief protest on the afternoon of Friday, February 24, during which they remained on corridors rather than entering their classrooms.

“The protest was part of a national wave of similar events, encouraged by some popular social media sites and centred around requests for increased access to toilets during the school day.

“Staff at the school dealt with the issue in a calm and professional manner and all students returned to their classrooms after a period of 10-15 minutes.”

They added: “The headteacher delivered assemblies to all students on the morning of Monday, February 27 during which the procedures for accessing toilets during the school day were re-iterated.

“Students were also reminded that their safety is the school’s paramount concern and that the behaviour of some students on Friday afternoon was not acceptable because it created a potentially unsafe situation – as well as causing a disruption to the learning of other students.

“A small number of students received a sanction as a consequence of causing disruption or using their mobile phones whilst in school (to film Friday’s events).

“Following the assemblies, the Headteacher met with representatives from our Student Council to discuss the issues further and to explore the possibility of adapting some of our current procedures covering this area.

“We are pleased to report that there have been no recurrences of any similar behaviour during the last week-and-a-half and sincerely hope that this matter is now closed.”

Toilets closed for 'minimum disruption'

When questioned further on the toilet policy, The Radclyffe School responded: “The school wishes students in the classroom to focus on their learning with minimum disruption.

“Students have free access to all school toilets at break and lunch times, during which times the facilities are supervised by members of duty staff.

“Students are encouraged to remain in lessons at all times but two sets of toilets are kept open throughout the school day if a student urgently needs to use them.

“Students with specific medical needs are provided with a pass that allows them to use the toilet in the medical room at any time of the school day.”

Nationwide protests

The school made nationwide headlines back in 2012, when a Freedom of Information Act request by Big Brother Watch revealed The Radclyffe School topped a list of schools with cameras located in either school changing rooms or toilets, at 20.

Protests have been happening in schools nationwide as a result of videos shared on social media, with many relating to school toilet or uniform policies.

Commenting on the nationwide protests, a Department for Education spokesperson said: “We are concerned at the reports of disruption and will be in touch with all schools and local authorities to ensure they are supported at this time.

“We will always back headteachers to take the action required to maintain calm and supportive classroom environments as they are best placed to work with their teachers, parents, pupils and local communities when developing and implementing policies.”

TikTok has safety teams closely monitoring the content to ensure it complies with its community guidelines, according to a spokesperson.

Any content found to violate its community guidelines – such as content which depicts violence or aggression, or harassment and bullying – will be removed.

The current assessment by TikTok suggests that most content linked to pupil protests on the platform does not violate its policies.