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Intimate Care

Intimate Care

Intimate Care Policy


Intimate Care is defined as care tasks associated with bodily functions , body parts and personal hygiene involving direct or indirect contact with or exposure of intimate parts of the body.

Intimate care tasks can include:

  • assistance with toileting and general hygiene: where a child with special needs cannot independently self-toilet, and until such time as they are able to do so;

  • dressing and undressing( including underwear);

  • changing of pads

  • personal hygiene involving intimate body parts;

  • showering( if required);

  • Menstrual care.

This policy and related procedures have been developed bearing in mind that all physical contact between staff and pupils:

● Should be aimed at meeting the needs of pupils

● Should respect the dignity of each pupil

● Should be consistent with professional integrity of staff members

Policy rationale

The aim of the policy is to increase knowledge, enhance skills and promote good practice in this sensitive area. All staff will be made aware of the standards expected of them. Intimate care will be carried out only by regular school employees.

Relationship to the School Ethos

All students and staff members have the right to feel safe and be treated with dignity and respect.

Aims and Objectives

The aims of this policy are:

● To ensure that the dignity and privacy of the pupil involved is paramount

● To develop a framework of procedures whereby intimate care requirements are dealt with in an appropriate manner

Staffing Procedures

Toileting ‘Accidents’

As teachers we act ‘in loco parentis’ and can deal generally with a toileting accident without direct assistance. It is good practice to only provide help that is required or reasonably requested by the student. The teacher should encourage the pupil to do as much for themselves as possible. A teacher must always be cognisant of his/her duty of care regarding effective supervision of all the students in the class when assisting a pupil with toileting.

The following procedure will apply in cases of

• Wetting

• Soiling/toileting accidents

• Vomiting on clothes

At all times we will maintain the privacy and dignity of the child.

The teacher/SNA will provide the child with a change of underwear, and encourage the child to change him/herself. If necessary, the school will provide a complete change of clothes. The teacher/SNA will assist the child with dressing only if absolutely necessary. The teacher/SNA will do all that is necessary to make the child comfortable, and the parents will be contacted.

Wet/soiled clothes will be put in a plastic bag and parents will be informed of what has happened by phone call or when they collect their child. Parents are asked to return the clothes given to their child, washed and folded.

Changes of clothes are kept in the storage boxes near the hall and underwear is kept in the office.

Staff are required to wear protective gloves while changing a child.

Children with Specific Toileting/Intimate Care Needs:

It may be the case that a pupil will have an ongoing need for assistance with toileting/intimate care. At the enrolment intake meeting parents will be encouraged to inform the school of such needs. In all such situations a meeting will be convened, after enrolment and either before or shortly after the child starts school. Parents/Guardians, Principal, Class Teacher, SET teacher, SNA, and if appropriate, the pupil, will attend. The specific care needs of the child, and how the school will meet them, will be clarified and an application for SNA access will be completed if not already done so.

The personnel involved will be identified and provision for occasions when staff members may be absent will be outlined (e.g. Substitute SNAs will not generally be involved in intimate care, unless sanctioned by the principal). Any change of personnel or procedures will be discussed with the pupil, if appropriate.

Two members of staff will be present when dealing with intimate care needs. (One staff member must be in view of the other) Staff will wear protective gloves (If deemed necessary by staff, children may require this also) .

As far as possible the pupil will be involved in identification of his/her personal requirements, wishes, changes etc., and at all times the dignity and privacy of the pupil will be paramount in addressing intimate care needs.

A written copy of the agreement will be kept on the pupil’s file and parents will be notified of any changes from agreed procedures.

Parent Responsibilities

Parents/Guardians need to identify any toileting needs. They should supply the school with the resources required to carry out the toileting or other care needs, which may include, but not be limited to:



Nappy sacks

Spare underwear

Spare clothes

Sanitary towels

Intimate Care/Toileting Plan

In the event that a specific toileting need has been identified for a pupil, an intimate Care/Toileting Plan will be developed in partnership with the pupil’s class teacher, designated SNA and the pupil’s parents/guardians. This can form part of the SSP(Student Support Plan).

The Care Plan must include:

● Specific Care Need

● Identification of the staff members involved

● Additional equipment required

● Child’s preferred means of communication; to include agreed terminology for body parts and bodily functions.

● Signature of Class Teacher, SNA , Parent and Principal

● Date of Care Plan

Success Criteria

The school evaluates the success of the policy through:

1. Participation of all staff in the policy

2. Safe and effective care of all pupils in our school

3. Feedback from all staff

4. Feedback from relevant parents/guardians.

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