A SWINDON primary school was forced into a u-turn after dozens of parents complained about a decision to make the toilets gender neutral.

The row broke out at Moredon Primary School after it introduced a new gender-neutral toileting policy, which saw its shared bathrooms open to all pupils regardless of gender.

The toilets were not modified in any way, meaning urinals remained in use in the boys' toilets despite girls being allowed in.

But the decision that was made without warning or consultation was met with anger by several parents who have now forced the school into a swift U-turn.

One mother, who did not wish to be named, said: “”It makes kids think it’s normal to be sharing toilets with other sexes but when you go out, you can’t do that. It’s not like Asda or McDonald’s have gender-free toilets so why do the school think it’s acceptable.”

Another parent added: “It’s almost like they are pushing liberal views on the kids, especially when the kids start asking why they are gender-free and the teachers explain about some kids wanting to be the other sex.

“What happens then, they start thinking ‘am I actually a girl’ or whatever? It’s stupid, just leave things alone so kids can be kids and enjoy their time in school before they get to secondary and it’s all work, work, work.”

Although most parents were against the changes to the children’s toilet facilities, the main reason behind the anger did not relate to the subject of identity, but privacy and the fact nobody was informed.

Speaking anonymously, a mother of an eight-year-old pupil said: “No one knew about it until the children were coming home and telling everyone – apparently they are the first school to do it in Swindon.

“My child is eight and the first I heard was when he come home and told us there was a little girl in the toilet while he was using the urinal."

Parents said they have struggled to get answers from interim headteacher and safeguarding lead Anna Willcox.

The mother added: “My only issue with this is that they haven’t done it properly and haven’t even consulted the parents.”

The school later made the decision to revert the toilets back to how they were, separate for girls and boys.

In a statement Ms Wilcox, said: “At Moredon Primary and Nursery School, we believe in equality for all children in all aspects of school life.

“The school was challenged by an external body about the toilet facilities and making sure they were inclusive for all groups of children. With the best of intentions, for two days we made a change to school policy. On reflection, we recognised that whilst our intentions were right, we didn’t take the best approach.

“We’ve listened and taken on board the feedback from some of our parents and made a further adjustment to our policy.

“We now have both unisex and single sex toilets in school. As a school, we will continue to strive for an equitable provision that allows for freedom of choice whilst maintaining and respecting individual privacy.”