Curio Critique # 18:Girls’ schools in apartheid South AfricaJuly 16, 2017
Curio Critique #20: Humour in EducationJuly 17, 2017
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The Committee on the Rights of the Child ... defines ‘corporal’ or ‘physical’ punishment :
“any punishment in which physical force is used and intended to cause some degree of pain or discomfort, however light. Most involves hitting (“smacking”, “slapping”, “spanking”) children, with the hand or with an implement ……. In the view of the Committee, corporal punishment is invariably degrading.”
Christian educationists used to draw on Proverbs 13:24
Whoever spares the rod hates their children,
but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.
So, it is not surprising to find an endorsement of corporal punishment in Section 86. of the Travancore Education Code published during the British rule in India.
In 2015, T. Ramavarma began his Times of India report on the use of bamboo canes in schools in Kochi thus: In stationery shops there is one item as much in demand as schoolbags, textbooks and umbrellas- brightly coloured canes of varying thickness, and shopkeepers smile knowingly when the customers, often school officials, prefer the thinner, whip-like ones.
Colin Dunne in 2013 published an article in the Daily Mail praising the headmaster of his school, M.L.Forster.
The following is an extract :
For 20 years, he took grubby little Yorkshire lads and turned them into young men who were well- educated and even semi-civilised, whether they liked it or not. By the thousand.
He achieved this with a combination of charm, wit, high intelligence, blazing charisma and a personality that would stop a tank. Plus, of course, his cane.
He ruled not so much with a rod of iron as with a rod of whistling bamboo... To this day, you will find countless elderly people who swear their lives were vastly enhanced by his early influence. Me among them..
Curio Quest Should we have a re-look at the necessity of corporal punishment in schools?