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Corporal Punishment at Schools


Corporal punishment is a harsh method of punishing children for misbehavior, which involves causing.physical pain. While there have been numerous debates about it being wrong and many countries have banned it, corporal punishment remains is still frequently applied in many school systems over the world. Moreover, what concerns family upbringing, the ways of punishment can be recommended, but not controlled. Thus, many types of research have been performed with the aim of checking the negative impact of corporal punishment on the children’s behavior.

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Alternatives to corporal punishment at schools

While many educators consider corporal punishment wrong and in some countries it is even illegal, there are states in which it is still a popular means of regulating the schoolchildren’s behavior. For instance, a research analyzing the alternatives to corporal punishment performed in Kenia shows that the teachers highly approve of it and want it to be supported at a state level (Mwenda 224). The alternatives such as parents’ involvement school suspension, counseling, and guidance are not favored by the Kenyan teachers (Mwenda 224). The students report that educators apply corporal punishment to exercise their authority, although there are other means of maintaining discipline in the classroom (Mwenda 229).

Adverse impact of physical abuse on the children

A similar study in the USA showed that in the provincial areas of the country, corporal punishment is often applied. The outcomes of such sanctions may be harmful not only to the children’s physical state but also their psychological well-being (Dupper and Montgomery Dingus 245). According to Hyman, such children have lower rational thinking abilities, are not able to find adequate solutions, and tend to be hostile and disobedient (qtd. in Dupper and Montgomery Dingus 245). Hyman also suggests that if a child suffers from corporal punishment at pre-school and school periods, he or she is likely to have lower grades, worse abilities, and poor social capacity (qtd. in Dupper and Montgomery Dingus 245).

Corporal punishment in public schools

What is surprising is that even private school practice corporal punishment. As a study in a private school in Nepal indicates, teachers practice such methods because the parents and school administrators expect them to do so (Khanal and Park 53). What concerns the students, they accept this practice as “a culture of school” (Khanal and Park 53). While the authors agree that motivating the children to learn is important, they recommend educating the teachers on alternative disciplinary methods.

In most cases, the schoolchildren suffering from violent punishment methods find consolation at home. However, the rates of strict domestic approaches are also high. Corporal punishment at home is even worse than at school, as the child is being abused by the close people. Therefore, the outcomes of severe domestic discipline approaches have a more critical impact on the child’s future behavior and well-being. The research shows that the parents who exercise spanking are also more disposed to other physically abusing ways of punishment (Zolotor et al. 367). The researchers suggest educating the parents about the adverse outcomes of corporal punishment in order to eliminate the frequency of this harsh disciplinary method (Zolotor et al. 367).


Unfortunately, corporal punishment is still frequently applied in many schools and at homes. While the parents and educators take care of the discipline, they forget the severe negative impact of such method. To decrease the use of corporal punishment, the dangers implicated by it should be explained and discussed through the media at a state level. More efforts should be made on the way to eliminating any forms of child abuse.

Works Cited

Dupper, David R., and Amy E. Montgomery Dingus. “Corporal Punishment in U.S. Public Schools: A Continuing Challenge for School Social Workers.” Children and Schools, vol. 30, no. 4, 2008, pp. 243-250.

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Khanal, Jeevan, and Sae-Hoon Park. “Corporal Punishment in Private Schools: The Case of Kathmandu, Nepal.” Journal of Education and Practice, vol. 7, no. 26, 2016, pp. 53-61.

Mwenda, Kirema Joseph. “Taking Student Protection to the Next Level: Are the Alternatives to Corporal Punishment Effective?” International Journal of Education and Research, vol. 4, no. 10, 2016, pp. 223-234.

Zolotor, Adam J., et al. “Speak Softly: And Forget the Stick: Corporal Punishment and Child Physical Abuse.” American Journal of Preventive Medicine, vol. 35, no. 4, 2008, pp. 364-369.

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