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YOUR VIEW: Is corporal punishment in our schools OK?

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Social Snippets corporal punishment

This week The Outlook published a story about Alexander City and Tallapoosa County school systems using corporal punishment on their students. The method is a last resort but is still utilized after other failed attempts to modify student behavior. Parents or guardians must agree to allow it to be used on their students.

We asked how readers felt about it on our Facebook page and here’s what some of you said:

“I would want to know more about what is involved. And I would also want to hear what kind of success rate they’ve had with changing behaviors when it has been used. It’s not a substitute for good parenting, but could be helpful in the elementary school when everyone is at the end of their rope.”

— Elsie Hickman

“Go for it! I always signed the permission slip.”

— Teneeshia Goodman-Johnson

“Normally I would support this but having a child who received corporal punishment because ‘his teacher had a bad day’... no. I support corporal punishment but I don’t trust (most) teachers’ judgment to give the punishment.” 

— Ashley L. Martin

“Yes sir! My son got one paddling, once. They called me like three times to make sure I was still in agreement, explained the situation and I was like uhhh hello I signed the slip! I whoop them at home, they can be whooped at school.”

— Amanda M. Williams

“I’ll discipline my child for wrongdoing. I will not have anyone put any effort like that toward any of my four children.”

— Elizabeth Snider

“As a former teacher, I can tell you the best discipline was when parents were pulled from their jobs to come to the school. This was required for repeated discipline issues before the student was allowed back in the classroom. If the child had presented problems in every class, parents were required to attend each class with the child for a day. It worked 25 years ago, why not now?”

— Virginia Edge Heath 

“Not for it! It’s 2019 and I watch the news way too much you can’t trust anyone. Adults can be so cruel to kids especially when they are having a bad day or personal issues and bring them to work. My kids get all the discipline they need. I’m always a phone call away or even a note in their bookbags. All a teacher or principal needs to do for mine is teach, demand respect, and keep me well informed if something is wrong. I can handle the rest! I was raised in a strong family that demanded you to get good grades, be respectful, and to treat others how you wanted to be treated if not that was your backside and I carry that with me til this day.”

— Sherriee Lyons

“Negative. If parents can be jailed for whooping their kids at home then discipline shouldn’t be left at the hands of school officials.”

— Melanie Williams-Jackson

“I never got in trouble at school but the one time I did, I got a paddling for it. What did I do, you might ask? I didn’t sit in my assigned lunch table seat. I was a senior in high school. Never had assigned seats before ever. Never been in trouble ever, literally. And I got three extremely hard licks for sitting with my friends. I couldn’t sit right the whole day. Left a big bruise. Missed a test during that time that I wasn’t allowed to make up and it almost cost me my honors title because I was already struggling in that class. So no, you’re not gonna whoop my kid. I will do that myself at home so he doesn’t miss class.”

— Kenzie Caylor

“Corporal punishment is NOT abuse, quite a difference. If it was administered correctly at home, would not have to worry about it at school.”

— Kattie McLain Hocutt

“This is the first form I sign at the beginning of school. My kids know if they get a paddling at school, they will get another one when they get home but worse!”

— Denean Lloyd Patterson 

“Amen. I need all the help I can get.”

— Tonya Harry Jones

“That would be a no for me. Punishment is my job.”

— Melinda Weathers

In a voluntary poll on The Outlook’s website that asked if readers believed in corporal punishment in schools, 34 people voted yes and 15 people voted no. Another poll asked if readers believe in spanking children at home as means of discipline and 45 people voted yes while seven people voted no.

Have some thoughts on the matter you’d like to add? We’d be happy to accept a letter to the editor. Send it to editor@alexcityoutlook.com