Corporal Punishment In Public Schools

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Corporal punishment within public school systems continues to be a controversial issue, however, its use is one of the most effective means of discipline in public schools. “Corporal punishment is technically defined as the infliction of physical pain contingent upon the occurrence of a misbehavior (Vockell, 2010).” The use of corporal punishment has many advantages and supporters. The issue of corporal punishment has reached the United States Supreme Court. James Ingraham and Roosevelt Andrews suffered severe paddlings that left bruises and severe pain that required medical attention. The parents of these students filed a lawsuit claiming the paddlings were unconstitutional and violated their right of the Eighth Amendment- prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment. However, the court ruled against them. The court found the Eighth Amendment is intended to protect criminals, not school children. It also ruled the paddlings were not cruel and unusual. Courts have found in favor of the schools and educators in numerous cases ( (Hinchey, 2003). A human rights treaty, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, states discipline of children involving violence is unacceptable. The United States is one of two countries that have not yet ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (Hinchey, 2003). “Parents in states where corporal punishment is legal can protect their children from beatings only by removing them from schools that employ paddling (Hinchey,
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