Texas schools to start paddling students as punishment

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A Texas School District has ruled six to zero in favor of allowing teachers to carry out corporal punishment on misbehaving students. The new policy will allow school administrators to discipline students with thick, wooden paddles.

The Texas school district will join dozens of other schools in allowing teachers to use wooden paddles to punish misbehaving students.

A Texas School District has ruled six to zero in favor of allowing teachers to carry out corporal punishment on misbehaving students.

In Three Rivers, Texas, teachers and school administrators are shopping for some paddles. As part of a newly approved policy by the school district, a paddle will be used to administer corporal punishment when a student misbehaves in school.

Trustees of the district voted in a whopping 6-0 decision. The policy states that the principle or campus' behavior coordinator can administer the paddle whacking.

Students in the two school district that stretches from San Antonio to Corpus Christi whose will receive one paddling for an infraction when they misbehave at school, if their parents have provided written and verbal consent. Parents have the choice whether to opt in or out for their child receiving corporal punishment.

“If the parent is not comfortable with it, that’s the end of the discussion,” Superintendent Mary Springs said. The district had a little more than 700 students in the 2014-15 school year.

Corporal punishment has grown to be a controversial issue that seemingly divided southern states versus northern. A total of fifteen states allow schools to paddle students as a disciplinary measure, with all but three of those states being in the southern vicinity of the United States. Arizona, Wyoming, and South Dakota are the only non-southern states that support the physical discipline measure.



Three Rivers Elementary School’s campus behavior coordinator, Andrew Amaro, proposed the idea of paddling to district leaders earlier this year. Amaro, a Three Rivers native, said he hopes the new disciplinary measure will have a more immediate effect on students than in-school suspension or detention. Amaro recalls being subjected to corporal punishment, and it's positive effects.

“I believe it worked,” Amaro said. “It was an immediate response for me. I knew that if I got in trouble with a teacher and I was disrespectful, whatever the infraction was, I knew I was going to get a swat by the principal.”

Corporal punishment is often carried out with a large, heavy wooden paddle. Teachers swat or lash the misbehaving student on the backside, hands, arms, or elsewhere on the body. The disciplinary technique has drawn extreme criticism, but also support. The Pope said he supports corporal punishment, but under certain conditions. 

"We will look at how many discipline referrals were made compared to last year and how many times (corporal punishment) was administered," Springs, the schools Superindent, said. "If it reduces the number of discipline referrals, then that is a good thing."

View the full policy on the Texas' districts new corporal punishment ruling, below:

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Political Outsource | Connect With The World: Texas schools to start paddling students as punishment
Texas schools to start paddling students as punishment
A Texas School District has ruled six to zero in favor of allowing teachers to carry out corporal punishment on misbehaving students. The new policy will allow school administrators to discipline students with thick, wooden paddles.
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