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Ban paddling

Staff Report • Oct 22, 2013 at 8:49 AM

Hitting children with boards is not at all effective in any sense of learning school material nor in learning to behave well. Every single research study ever published on this topic finds fault with corporal punishment of school children. That is why it has now been prohibited by over 100 nations, 31 states and the District of Columbia, in all Catholic schools in the United States and in schools operated by the Pentagon overseas. If it were effective, and if discipline declined when it was banned, its use would have been reinstated. Schools that hit kids have lower graduation rates, lower scores on national achievement tests, and more vandalism. It is still practiced in some African countries, in the Middle East (except in Israel) and in a few countries in Southeast Asia. And yes, in Tennessee.Those educators who use this barbaric and brutal technique should be open to letting a reporter and photographer witness and film its actual use on an elementary school girl. Will they? Nope, never has a U.S. educator allowed a camera in or even a reporter. Why not? Parental permission can be obtained, no law broken. It is not allowed because even the most ardent paddler knows in his heart he is doing something wrong to a child. The legislature needs to step up and do the right thing — ban paddling in Tennessee. Good school discipline is instilled in the mind, not the behind.ROBERT FATHMANFounder of the National Coalition to Abolish Corporal Punishment in SchoolsDublin, Ohio

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