Solihull Sixth Form College
Solihull Sixth Form College said students will not be able to close the cubicle door during the examsWikicomms

A college in the Midlands has banned students from going to the toilets on their own during exam time in a bid to stop cheating.

Solihull Sixth Form College has said all students taking mock exams later this month must be accompanied by an invigilator when they attend the toilet and will not even be allowed to close the cubicle door.

Parents of the pupils who attend the college have reacted angrily to the "clear disregard for basic human rights".

Principal Paul Ashdown admitted that the decision was "extreme" but believes it is necessary as two students were caught using their phones during toilet breaks to cheat last year.

In an email to families, seen by the Birmingham Mail, Ashdown said: "We have had students attempt to cheat using phones while on toilet breaks during an exam.

"This means that from now on, if a student does require a toilet break during an exam, they will be accompanied into the toilet area by an invigilator of the appropriate sex, and will not be allowed to close the door if they need to use an individual stall.

"Although this may seem a little extreme, it is the only way we can ensure a student does not use a mobile phone while in the toilet.

"Ideally, students should ensure they do not need to break their concentration by going to the toilet in the middle of the exam."

The new rule will come into place when students sit their mock AS and A2 exams later in the month.

Ashdown assured that the invigilators will supervise the students "closely, but sensitively" and the steps have been taken to "protect the future chances of our students".

He added: "The college is implementing this toilet breaks policy during examinations to make students aware that attempting to cheat is simply not worth it.

"A very small minority of students attempt to cheat and they use increasingly inventive and sophisticated techniques, including using mobile phones smuggled into the toilets.

"However, the consequences of cheating are very severe as students will find themselves disqualified from that exam by the exam board, and possibly even disqualified from all their other exams too."