Corpun file 26257 at www.corpun.com
Sunday Sun, Barbados, 3 January 2016
Corporal punishment to reduce indiscipline
By Barry Alleyne
Click to enlarge
IN A culture where suspensions don't work and detentions are
laughed at by some students, corporal punishment should remain in
schools in Barbados.
That's the feeling of president of the Barbados Secondary
Teachers Union (BSTU), Mary Redman.
But along with the BSTU's membership supporting the flogging of
students by principals or senior teachers, Redman sees many other
problem facing schools due to a lack of discipline.
"In Barbados, we have children who are brave enough to curse
teachers to their faces. We have children who regularly threaten
teachers with violence," the outspoken BSTU chief noted.
Redman said that more than ever before, police stations have been
inundated with reports made by teachers who fear for their
safety. "Some teachers have been forced to report cases of
them being assaulted by students, or being threatened with
assault," she said in a recent interview.
Redman said the use of corporal punishment as a deterrent could
definitely lead to a decline in such unruly behaviour by
She said many people were not understanding there was a vast
difference between corporal punishment and child abuse, between
properly regulated and judiciously administered corporal
punishment and abuse. People are not recognizing that, or choose
not to. People talk about the society being more violent now as a
result of corporal punishment but the irony is that the society
is now more violent in times of reduced corporal punishment and
no alternatives for instilling proper discipline."
Redman said the BSTU's membership felt strongly about the issue.
"Corporal punishment should remain on the statute books: she
stressed. "To simply remove it and not have anything viable
and practical to replace it with would make no sense.
"It should always be there as a deterrent only."
Redman, who has been teaching for more than three decades, said
children have recognised how to [sic] strong discipline,
and it was getting out of hand.
"We have a situation now where children flout school rules
openly. They show little regard or respect for teachers, and even
for principals regarding the administration of discipline. They
even show little regard for authority in society, even for the
police," Redman said.
According to her, the Ministry of Education and parents also had
a very important part to play in the general administration of
discipline across the system.
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