Italian primary school asks children to 'bring in own toilet roll' due to lack of funding

Around 37 per cent of Italian state schools lack the essential, according to recent report

Gabriel Samuels
Tuesday 18 October 2016 19:21 BST
The school in Milan is one of many institutions in Italy struggling to fund essentials
The school in Milan is one of many institutions in Italy struggling to fund essentials

A state school in Italy has reacted to a lack of public funding by reportedly asking pupils to bring essentials - including toilet rolls - into class with them.

Scuola Primaria Casati, a primary school in the centre of Milan, issued a note to parents saying: “We have run out of toilet paper… can you bring in one packet of four rolls of toilet paper [each] please!”.

The school reportedly also requested that children bring in their own writing paper and cups to use while on the premises, after it failed to raise enough money for essentials.

Parents were said to be willing to accept the changes, although the school could not legally force them to comply, but expressed concerns about the financial situation.

"The school year has only just started, and we are informed that school funds are low and that parents should provide various things including paper, cups and even toilet paper" one parent, William Hardy, told the Local.

"Very rarely is a light shone on these day-to-day problems. All the parents agree with me that the situation is a disgrace, but are resigned to the situation and the school authorities are extremely reluctant to change the status quo.

"If the school authorities were more transparent, and provided detailed breakdowns of the costs involved in running a school, then at least parents would be better informed and could work better with the schools to rectify the problems.”

A report published last month by the welfare charity Cittadinanzattiva revealed growing financial problems in Italy's state school system, including underfunding, poor hygiene and structural issues.

The survey found 37 per cent of schools were lacking toilet paper, while 50% did not have enough soap in the bathrooms. Over 15 per cent of state schools meanwhile had "structural problems" which could lead to dangerous health and safety issues.

In June, up to a quarter of Italian schools failed hygiene tests with the issues ranging from expired food and dirty work surfaces to staff smoking in the kitchens and canteens.

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