Published Monday, 06 February 2012
Local teachers are concerned about the growing problem. (© UTV)
According to a new report, 62% of staff have noticed the number of children wetting or soiling themselves during the school day going up over the past five years.
The figure rises to 71% for youngsters aged between three and five in primary one.
Anne Millis, NI president of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers - which carried out the study - said the problem puts extra pressure on staff.
"Having to deal with increased numbers of pupils who have not yet been toilet trained puts extra pressure on education staff when they already have enough pressure on them," she said.
"Schools need to give staff clear guidance on how to deal with toileting accidents so that they know what they are allowed to do and who should be dealing with an incident.
"It is also important that education staff feel that have support from their school nurse or head, and that they know where to obtain guidance should they need it."
ATL surveyed 848 education staff working in state, independent and academy schools in the UK during October and November 2011.
Respondents believed the main reason for the increase was due to parents not toilet training their children before they start school.
ATL said legislation had led some schools to believe they can no longer refuse to take these children.
Local teachers have called for more to be done to solve the issue.
A Londonderry-based teacher said: "This is a major problem for us - over 45% of our nursery children are not toilet trained when coming into nursery when they are three years old.
"We also have children who soil and wet a great deal even in reception. Our parents just have no idea when and how to toilet train their children.
"We are having to put on a workshop to support them."
A teacher from a controlled school in Co Antrim said nappies have been designed to absorb large quantities of liquid.
She added: "Children do not feel wet or notice any discomfort and this seems to delay their urge to be free of nappies. Pull-ups are similar."
© UTV News