Should Corporal Punishment Still Be Allowed in Schools?

Wednesday June 13, 2012

By Amy Morin

A Florida mother is suing the school department after the school's principal paddled her five-year-old son so severely that he had to be taken to the emergency room because the event triggered an asthma attack. Several Florida lawmakers have recently expressed opposition to school paddling and are trying to outlaw corporal punishment at school. This issue sheds light on the obvious divide amongst cultures about whether or not corporal punishment is an acceptable discipline practice. In many states, not only are teachers not allowed to spank children, they would most likely be arrested if they did. However, 19 southern and mid-western states consider paddling an acceptable form of discipline for schools. A lot of people have strong feelings about whether or not spanking is an effective discipline strategy. Talk to someone who is concerned that children don't have any respect these days and you'll likely hear that it's because 'there's a lack of discipline.' On the contrary, read a study on reasons why there is so much violence in schools and you'll likely find 'too harsh of discipline leads to aggressive behaviors.'  It's no wonder that parents struggle to identify what constitutes healthy discipline for children. School districts apparently struggle with this issue as well.  

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