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Pupils at Walton Academy in Grantham are protesting over issues including unisex toilets and bullying





Pupils are reported to be staying out of lessons and protesting at a Grantham school today over a number of issues including the introduction of unisex toilets, bullying and mental health.

It is said about 100 pupils are protesting at Walton Academy in Grantham.

A number of parents have contacted the Journal to say their children are not in lessons and are protesting instead in the school grounds.

Students are protesting at Walton Academy. (62668767)
Students are protesting at Walton Academy. (62668767)

Parent Leeanne O'Callaghan, whose 15-year-old daughter is protesting, said it is a peaceful protest and added: "I am supporting her as long as it does not get nasty.

"She has not been in a protest before but she is strong-minded and this is something that she has come home and complained about numerous times."

Ms O'Callaghan said that girls were not going to the loos because they are left in a bad state by some pupils. She said there were no mirrors and people could see through windows into the toilets, although not the cubicles.

Another parent said her son was striking and claimed that pupils were only allowed to use the toilets at lunchtime and at break time and not during any other breaks between lessons.

One parent said that there are a number of issues which the pupils are protesting against as well as the toilet situation. He said they were unhappy with how the mental health of pupils was dealt with.

He said: "I think this is a very respectable thing they are doing and I think their voices need to be heard. It's a very noble thing."

Parents and pupils have complained about bullying at the school, saying that not enough was being done to deal with it.

Pupils taking part in the protest have voiced their concerns to the Journal.

The school has responded to the protest. Principal Jess Leonard blames TikTok for the pupils' actions.

In a recent email to parents, principal Jess Leonard said: "If we do have a situation where any students decided to protest on academy site, any inappropriate behaviour, filming/sharing of the event or damage will be dealt with very seriously and result in a high level of sanction.

"We pride ourselves at Walton as being one community and one team. We want to continue working together to provide the best provision that we can for our community both now and in the future."

The school has told parents not to send their children to school on Wednesday (March 1), if they are in Years 7, 8, 9 and 10, as teachers will be on strike that day.

But one parent said that it was unfair that teachers could go on strike while students were told they would not be able to protest peacefully.

Pupils have been told by the school to raise any issues with teachers, the student council and senior leadership.



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