A Georgia school approved a new corporal punishment policy.
Controversy has been sparked by the news that a Georgia school has reinstated corporal punishment in the form of "paddling".
The story came to light when the school sent the children's parents consent forms and informed them of their new corporal punishment policy.
Jody Boulineau, the Superintendent of Georgia School for Innovation and the Classics, told WRDW.com that of the 100 forms they had received, a third consented to their child's paddling.
Boulineau said that discipline is a high priority at the school and that the paddling had always been on the school charter and is legal under Georgia law.
"There was a time where corporal punishment was kind of the norm in school and you didn't have the problems that you have.”
Jody Boulineau, WRDW.com, September 11, 2018.
The recent escalation of violence and bullying in schools have raised anxiety in the school system to an all-time high, and GSIC believes that a return to "old-school" methods may hold the key to resolving the school's problems.
Boulineau referred to paddling as one of the tools the school intends to use to enforce discipline in the classroom.
Boulineau explained that there will be no wholesale paddling.
The measure is to be applied in extreme situations and only if the child's parents have signed the consent form.
The form specifies how the punishment is to be applied. The student to be censured will be taken into an office behind closed doors, place their hands on their knees or piece of furniture and will be struck on the buttocks with a paddle no more than 3 times.
Parents who withhold consent for paddling will have to agree to an alternative disciplinary measure.
Namely, that their children will be subjected to up to 5 day's suspension as a punishment for misbehaving or infringing school discipline.
While Georgia brings back paddling at school, across the Atlantic in Scotland, Parliament has passed a new law that forbids parents from hitting children.
Parents in the rest of the UK can still use corporal punishment in what is termed as a “reasonable punishment”, but the "reasonable" is not clearly defined.
In 2014, UNICEF reported that 80% of the world’s children are subject to some form of physical punishment at home.
A survey conducted in the UK revealed that 59% of adults felt that “smacking should not be banned”. 76% of US adults believe that children occasionally need a “good hard spanking”.
In a related story, a study has discovered that children who are spanked are more likely to experience increased anti-social behavior, aggression, and mental health problems.
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