our view

Many can remember their school days including the ever-present paddle on the teacher’s desk and the teacher not being afraid to use it on a misbehaving student’s backside.

Corporal punishment is still used in Alexander City and Tallapoosa County schools but sparingly and as a last resort. After all, it’s not up to the schools to raise children; that’s the job of responsible parents.

According to www.procon.org, 19 states legally permit corporal punishment in public schools and most are in the South: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. The website said 70% of corporal punishment happens in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Mississippi and Texas.

Corporal punishment is defined as physical punishment, most often spanking with a hand or paddle or striking a student across his or her hand with a ruler or leather strap. Even the use of chemical spray and TASERS have been recorded in some U.S. schools and we don’t advocate that sort of extreme action.

Some feel corporal punishment sets clear limits, motivates children to behave and is more acceptable than a suspension. Others feel it is sanctioned violence and leads to depression, anxiety and other mental health issues.

Does it work? That’s debatable. But it stands a much better chance of changing behaviors for the better if discipline at school is supported by discipline at home.