Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Bobbie J. Greenlee
Corporal punishment is most often equated with paddling or the striking of a student's buttocks with a wooden paddle by a school authority to maintain discipline or to enforce school rules. However, corporal punishment is more broadly defined as reasonable physical force used by school authorities to restrain disruptive students, to correct unacceptable behavior, and to maintain the order necessary to provide a proper educational program. The long history of corporal punishment has biblical roots, marked by the Old Testament notion of “Spare the rod and spoil the child.” The use of corporal punishment can be traced to precolonial England, and it has been a conventional method of disciplining children in the United States since colonial times. Corporal punishment has been a common disciplinary tool within school systems in the United States. Legal and popular opinion sanction parental authority to use corporal punishment to discipline children, and similarly, under the ...