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Corporal Punishment

How much do you know about the use of corporal punishment in your state? If you are like many parents, you don't even know if corporal punishment is legal in your state. And, you probably don't think that it's much of a problem, right? After all, it's not something we often hear much about. But, did you know that, in just the last few years, there were nearly a quarter of a million reports of corporal punishment in America's schools? It's true!

Punishing Kids: Hitting the Books

Corporal punishment really gives a whole new meaning to hitting the books! If you are not clear about what it is, corporal punishment is the act of physical force being used on a student at school. What that means, and what has been proven by thousands of reports, is that there are children who are routinely hit, pushed, pulled, spanked, etc., in school by the adults in charge. There are actually 20 states where corporal punishment is still legal - Texas and Florida among them. Texas just so happens to have the highest rate of incidents of corporal punishment. Statistically, children who have learning disabilities are on the receiving end of the physical force more often than other students.

Keep these tips in mind if you don't want your child's school using corporal punishment:

  • Discuss corporal punishment with your child. Let him know that want any incidents of corporal punishment reported to you.
  • Let your child's teacher know that you are not in favor of corporal punishment, even if it is legal in your state. You can also speak with the principal. Also, write a letter stating do not want corporal punishment used on your child and have the principal place the letter in your child's file.
  • Talk to the Parent Teacher Association (PTA), your local legislatures, etc. to get the use of corporal punishment banned in your state. Try to work with other parents to change the law in your district or state.
  • Use behavior contracts instead of corporal punishment.

Corporal Punishment: Pain, No Gain

Corporal punishment does not teach your child how to behave; it merely punishes him for his behavior. It is important that you act as an advocate for your child as well as holding him accountable for his behavior. If your child has ongoing behavior issues, work with his teacher and the school to find alternatives to using physical force. You can successfully work to take the paddle out of the schools hand on behalf of your child!