A BORDERS school has refuted claims that it has removed sanitary items from most of its gender neutral toilets in response to boys 'mistreating' the free products.

Toilet facilities at Jedburgh Grammar Campus are gender neutral, meaning they are accessible to anyone, regardless of their gender.

However, a concerned parent, who we have agreed not to name, contacted this newspaper claiming that period products had been removed from all loos and placed in one which was designated as 'girls only' in response to young boys at the school misbehaving.

All of the toilets are now gender neutral and sanitary products continue to be available in multiple toilets throughout the campus."

The parent said: "Their [the school's] solution to all of it was to stick a sticker for a 'girls only' cubicle, and that's where the sanitary towels will be kept in Jedburgh Grammar Campus.

"According to the school this has resolved the issue.

"It feels like they're prioritising the minority, not the majority."

In response to these claims, a Scottish Borders Council (SBC) spokesperson said the claims are "absolutely not true" and that sanitary items are available in all of the gender neutral facilities.

The spokesperson added: "When the campus opened initially some toilets were allocated by gender. Even when a very small number of cubicles were gender specific, sanitary products were also available in gender neutral toilets around the campus.

"All of the toilets are now gender neutral and sanitary products continue to be available in multiple toilets throughout the campus. This is an area the schools keeps under review and will take guidance from pupils on.

"Sanitary products were also available in gender neutral toilets in the old school prior to the move to the new campus, an action praised by the school’s LGBT group."

Peeblesshire News: An example of the toilets used by staff, pupils and visitors at Jedburgh Grammar Campus. Photo: SBCAn example of the toilets used by staff, pupils and visitors at Jedburgh Grammar Campus. Photo: SBC

Gender neutral facilities are designed to support those who do not sit in the gender binary (boy or girl) – this can include pupils, staff or visitors who are transgender, non-binary, gender neutral, or gender fluid, among other labels.

The facilities are not traditional 'toilet blocks' – a separate room with stalls and sinks.

The toilet facilities consist of individual, fully enclosed cubicles with shared external sinks. Most of the toilet cubicles feature a bag filled with emergency period products.

The external sinks are fully visible from the main corridors and walkways.

There are also accessible cubicles designed with staff, pupils and visitors with disabilities in mind, which are also fully enclosed and contain hand-washing facilities.

Providing gender neutral facilities has been a widely discussed topic in the Borders, particularly as the local authority looks to build new secondary schools in Galashiels and Peebles.

Peeblesshire News: The new school campus features inclusive and accessible toilet facilities which include bags with free period products. Photo: SBCThe new school campus features inclusive and accessible toilet facilities which include bags with free period products. Photo: SBC

At a meeting of full council meeting last year, in response to claims from then-Galashiels councillor Harry Scott regarding the bad behaviour of students 'waving sanitary pads like flags', a representative of the local authority at the time said it had “no knowledge of these incidents taking place”.

The parent who contacted the Border Telegraph said: "There has been myself and at least another four mums who have emailed their grievances to the council at the very beginning when the school was opened.

"If it [the issue] wasn't reported, why would school then put a sticker on one of the cubicles with a 'girls only' sign."

The spokesperson for SBC added: "No incidents of sanitary pads being “waved around like flags” have been reported to the campus senior leadership team.

"We don’t recognise the incident described however if any inappropriate behaviours are reported then these would be addressed with the young people involved.

"The headteacher would be happy to discuss any concerns with the parent."