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Schools: Facilities

Volume 475: debated on Monday 28 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what guidance his Department has issued to (a) local authorities, (b) head teachers and (c) school governors on hygiene and the cleaning and maintenance of school toilet facilities; (201216)

(2) if he will assess the availability of fresh drinking water in schools for (a) pupils and (b) staff; and if he will make a statement.

Although we have not issued discrete advice on hygiene and the maintenance and cleaning of school toilets, the Department’s guidance on standard specifications for secondary schools, “Toilets in Schools” at

http://www.teachernet.gov.uk/docbank/index.cfm?id=12420

makes clear the importance of well-designed and well-maintained facilities, so that pupils can and will readily make use of them.

We have no plans to assess the availability of drinking water in schools. The Education (School Premises) Regulations 1999 require schools to have a wholesome supply of water for domestic purposes including a supply of drinking water. The responsibility for ensuring maintained schools’ compliance with the regulations rests with local authorities.