Corporal Punishment – the debate continues

It may come as a shock to many that Corporal Punishment is legal in 19 states across the country.  According to this map the states in red allow it in some form;

19 States in red allow some form of Corporal Punishment in schools.

While opinions are strong on both sides of the debate, the debate remains alive and in some places in the country growing in numbers for a refinement of what Corporal Punishment is and just how far is to far and just how far is not far enough.

While it didn’t make it off the floor, one lawmaker in Kansas is pushing for harder Corporal Punishment allowing teachers to leave redness and bruises on children who are found to be breaking the rules in schools.

The bill which failed, is for many a sign that Corporal Punishment is not something that is going to quietly go away, as one National expert pointed,  “Paradoxically, I think it’s a good sign, and I’m totally against all spanking,” Murray Straus, co-director of the Family Research Laboratory at the University of New Hampshire, tells Yahoo Shine. “It’s a sign of desperation on the part of people trying to hold back the century-long development of more humane treatment of children. Even if it passes, which is unlikely, it’s not going to change the trend.” 

With Corporal Punishment laws trickling back into the spotlight, it brings to light the different ways in which schools address discipline especially in states that have banned it.  In my own state a well known Charter Network is dealing with its own questions as parents speak out harshly against padded rooms.  The argument – a room so small should not be a place to keep a child with discipline problems.  According to this news report, in the state of Washington, where spanking and hitting are illegal, parents are struggling with the notion of placing an unruly child in a padded “safe” room.

And these articles are just the top of the iceberg in an on growing and long discussed debate.  Blogs like MHBenton’s Blog and Newsy Guide along with websites like Stophitting and Corpun highlight just how much of a discussion Corporal Punishment is.

In a day in age where schools and school districts are faced with increasing numbers of students who push back and lash out,  the options facing the adults whose job is to protect the innocence around them is limited and sometimes not enough when more and more schools find themselves in a situation with one of their own students holding a loaded gun and pulling the trigger.

That doesn’t mean that I believe that violence solves violence.  On the contrary, I believe that across the country we are faced with a growing problem and I can honestly say, I don’t even know where to begin with a solution.


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