A Georgia School Is Bringing Back Spankings

Before you start thinking about Norman Rockwell paintings, you should remember something.

A school in Georgia has decided to bring back spankings.

I can hear the comments now.

“Good. Back in my day we had spankings and we didn’t have the problems that we do today.”

“It’s about time. Kids today could use it!”

I understand the sentiment but it falls short.

The Georgia School for Innovation and the Classics in Hephzibah sent letters home a few days ago asking parents for permission to spank their children should they step out of line. And this will be an old fashioned spanking. An administrator will use a wooden spoon. The child will bend over and put his hands on his knees. It will hurt. There’s nothing figurative about this.

You can almost smell the nostalgia.

But before you start thinking about Norman Rockwell paintings, you should remember something.

Times have changed. And by times, I don’t just mean kids.

Parents have changed too.

In a lot of instances, the parents are in just as much need of discipline as their children are. I’m not denying that the return of spankings might make life easier for teachers at the Georgia school. And I’m certainly not denying that there are kids at the school who could use corporal punishment. All I’m saying is that this is just another example of government stepping in to do what parents should have been doing all along.

I once talked to a teacher about the parents she’s had over the years. More and more, they just aren’t showing up. They don’t come to conferences. They don’t help with homework. They never communicate with the teacher unless it’s to defend their child from something that he got in trouble for.

If parents are undisciplined, thoughtless, and disengaged, why should we be surprised when their kids turn out the same way.

I’m not suggesting that we spank parents. And this new policy at The Georgia School for Innovation and the Classics could turn out to be a good one. But before we convince ourselves that simply bringing back spankings is going to somehow bring back the good old days, we need to pump the brakes.

I know of small children who watch vile, crude, and borderline pornographic content on TV. It’s not that they’re looking for it. They’re just in the room while their parents are watching it. And when they go to school, they act it out. A school can provide all of the discipline that it wants but if the child returns to a home where there is no discipline, it’s all for nothing.

I can understand the school’s position here. They’ve got to do something, even if parents won’t. But my heart breaks for our culture.

We expect everyone, from a coach to a principal to guide our children. And many times, these men and women offer excellent guidance.

But parents, the one group specifically designed to guide children, is offering that guidance less and less.

That’s what we’ve come to expect.

And it should concern all of us.

Comments
No. 1-4
Kywrite
Kywrite

Its a charter school, and highly competitive. Parents are welcome to opt out and take a five-day suspension for the kid instead. I think youre blowing this way out of proportion.

Alex Wilson
Alex Wilson

I can't see how this could ever go wrong, it certainly won't lead to either false allegations of or actual sexual abuse. It's not like the limited data we have suggests that around 10% of middle/high school students are sexually harassed by a teacher, coach, or other adult employee of their school and about 7% of them will endure sexual abuse that includes physical contact. I can't see how anyone would ever think that putting a minor behind a closed door with one or more adults for the express purpose of doing to them one of the things Donald Trump payed Stormy Daniels for would have even a remote possibility of leading to a child being sexually abused.

Robert Moore
Robert Moore

The problem with US public schools doesn't occur in our middle-class suburbs, and it doesn't occur among middle and upper class children. If you compare our upper-half kids to the upper-half of any other country in the world, we demolish them in every category.

The BIG problems in American schools come from poor and/or broken families. Those kids drag our scores down, and cause 95^% of the problems.

In other developed countries, they take care of these kids before they get to school. They make sure they are properly fed, they have a safe place to sleep, they are free from violence, etc. Then when they come to school, the teacher in the classroom has only teaching to do.

Here in the US we throw all of these problems at teachers, and they spend 80% of their time running a defacto orphanage along side their duties to teach.

This system wastes a lot of money, doesn't work for the problem kids, and ruins it for the ones that are okay.

The solution to problem children is not to beat them anymore than the solution to cancer is leeches. But with the current situation in many schools, you can see how crazy stuff like this can rise to the surface occasionally.

centerright
centerright

I heard a pastor once, talk about how both love and discipline are absolutely required. Love without discipline spoils the child, but discipline without love abuses the child.

For this school, don't parents need to explicitly give their permission, before the school can act?

I agree that parents, on average, are no longer responsible as they should be. But responsible parents should not be punished for this. if I lived in the district, I would decline allowing them to spank my child. I own my responsibilities as a father, and a government--even a school board--will not decide what is best for my kid. Now if my child has done something wrong, I want to hear about it. But nobody punishes my child this way except for me.