Corporal Punishment

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By: Laura McCreanor

Dear Sir, I am writing in reply to the recent publication of an item on the topic of corporal punishment. I do not agree that it is needed to bring discipline back into our schools. It is assumed that a child who has been caned would be less likely to commit another offence , but this was never proved and , in fact , one theory holds that severe corporal punishment increases the likelihood of future offences. There are better ways to discipline students than hitting them. Some parents may believe that spanking a child may be beneficial but apart from being potentially dangerous physically, it can lower their self esteem, hinder their academic abilities and may even contribute to disruptive and violent behaviour. Some pupils may feel so afraid to go to school that they are tempted to play truant. Over the past few years we have become more and more obsessive over bringing our lives into the twenty first century and now , here you are telling us that we should bring back corporal punishment, a system which is looked upon as old fashioned ! Discipline should begin in the home . Parents have and should accept the task of instilling in their children respect for right and wrong, respect for others and all the other basic lessons of living, working, playing and learning with others. They should try to teach him to control himself and take responsibility for his actions and their consequences .Unfortunately, because some parents find it difficult to do this from infancy , the teachers role is all the more difficult. Still, restoring this rule is not the way to resolve theses difficulties. Get to children in infancy and their early years and their lives will be shaped more fully for future growth. Restoring their teachers' power to hit them across the bottom or knuckles doesn't fit that picture. Forget corporal punishment. Roald Dahl's book entitled "Boy" tells about the times when corporal punishment was allowed to take place in all schools. A...
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