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www.corpun.com   :  Archive   :  2010   :  US Schools Dec 2010

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UNITED STATES
School CP - December 2010



Corpun file 22727

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myfoxhouston.com (Fox 26 TV), Houston, Texas, 1 December 2010

Corporal Punishment Still Exists in Some Schools

By Ford Atkinson

HOUSTON - Anti-corporal punishment activists say they will demonstrate in Austin Friday against paddling in Texas schools.

While most districts have already eliminated paddling, an estimated 20 percent of them still practice it on a limited basis.

Jimmy Dunne, president of People Opposed to Paddling Students, says corporal punishment in schools should be illegal.

"We consider corporal punishment in the schools not to be discipline but actually to be child abuse," Dunne says.

Pasadena ISD is one of the few districts in the Houston area that still occasionally uses paddling.

The district's spokesperson, Candace Ahlfinger, says paddling occurs about 40 times during the school year.

"We do have to have parent's permission, any time that corporal punishment is meted out," Ahlfinger says.

Ahlfinger says a witness must also be present.




Corpun file 22800

The Bolivar Commercial, Cleveland, Mississippi, 10 December 2010

Corporal punishment reinstated in Drew

By Candrese Jones


Click to enlarge

The Drew School District Board of Trustees approved the use of corporal punishment for grades K-6 during Thursday's meeting.

Last month, a discussion began about students' behavior in grades K-6 which sparked a motion to be called by Board President John Thigpen for the reinstatement of corporal punishment.

At that time the motion died for the lack of a second.

Thigpen said he noticed the student behavior problem during a walk through he and Trustee Jim Harman had with acting Superintendent Charles Barron.

"We did a walk through and I noticed that we need to look at something at this time to give those teachers some relief," said Thigpen, during last month's meeting. "We're gonna have to add something in addition to what they have over at the elementary school level."

During this month's meeting Thursday, the board discussed the possibility to reinstate corporal punishment for grades K-6 again.

"I didn't see anything in the policy where the parent would be given notification that little Johnny or whomever had been paddled and for what reason," said Trustee Vescia Smith, during board discussion Thursday about the policy. "Also I didn't see in the policy where parents would have to sign as to whether or not they wanted their child or children to receive corporal punishment."

"Believe all of that is in the minutes," said Harman.

The board agreed that those items would be placed in the policy.

"Also the problem we had with this last time was that the proper procedure wasn't followed," said Smith. "We had people that were going directly to corporal punishment as opposed to trying other things first."

"We will require and make sure that every procedure is to be used before corporal punishment," said Thigpen. "I would also like to say this too, we all have to start doing these walk throughs so that we can all understand some of the things we're dealing with.

"We sometimes have to make some tough decisions," he said. "You almost have to have some tough skin because we have to get some things done and under control."

"I think we need to see about mailing the referrals and notices home for when corporal punishment is used with the students," said Smith. "Because the referrals are not getting home to the parents when they are sent by the student."

The board agreed that a letter would be mailed to parents notifying them as to when their child was administered corporal punishment.

After all the discussion about the corporal punishment policy, the board unanimously voted to reinstate the use of corporal punishment for students in grades K-6 with all previously discussed stipulations.

Copyright 2010 The Bolivar Commercial. All rights reserved.




Corpun file 22808

Times Record News, Wichita Falls, Texas, 11 December 2010

Moms angry over swats

2 students at City View get spanked

By Ann Work


Click to enlarge

A male administrator at City View Junior/Senior High School spanked two 17-year-old female students with a paddle Thursday for going to the bathroom after lunch -- an "infraction" that both of the girls' mothers considered so minor that they've decided to speak out.

Despite a no-bathroom-break-directly-after-lunch policy, both girls went anyway, and then were called, one after the other, to City View Assistant Principal Darrell Frazier's office and punished with one "lick" apiece, according to mothers Charlotte Beaver and Barbi Parker.

City View Principal Raymond Weathersbee said Friday that the girls were punished for disobeying the directive of a teacher, not for simply going to the bathroom.

City View schools have practiced a pro-spanking policy for years.

According to page 40 of the City View "Student Code of Conduct," corporal punishment is permitted "as a corrective action to certain rules infractions in order to preserve an effective and orderly educational environment. Factors of student size and age, and the physical and mental and emotional conditions of the student shall be considered before the administration of any corporal punishment."

According to the policy manual, students must be informed of the reason, and a swat may be administered by the teacher, school principal or assistant principal.

The instrument used must be approved by the principal, and a record of swats must be maintained.

The specific directive that the girls disobeyed Thursday, according to Weathersbee, was a rule he instituted three weeks ago that forbade any student from using the bathroom directly after their 30-minute lunch period ends.

The school had been having an inordinately large number of tardies to classrooms after lunch, prompting Weathersbee to make the new rule, he said.

"Any kid that needs to go to the restroom needs to go during their lunch period," Weathersbee said. "They've got 30 minutes."

However, both mothers said that because their daughters were not late to their classes, and because they were observed going to the bathroom by a teacher who did not make any comment to them, they believed the punishment was too harsh.

Parker's daughter, who began attending City View's secondary school in the fall, was called to the office first. She had never been disciplined at the school before and, when given the choice between taking licks or spending time in In-School Suspension (ISS), she panicked, her mother said.

The daughter said, "I'll just take the lick, I guess," and later told her mother that she was shocked by the severity and how much it hurt. She told her mother that the swat burned for 30 minutes afterward.

"She wanted me to look at her butt when she got home. She asked me, 'Can they do that?' She's never been hit like that. Not by me, or by her dad, or by anyone ever," Parker said.

Because the Parker family is new to the district, Parker said she did not know of City View's pro-spanking philosophy. She plans to remove her child from City View after Christmas, she said.

"That's crazy. Is this some Nazi war camp or something? What? Are you kidding me? Going to the bathroom is going to the bathroom!" Parker said.

After Parker's daughter received her spanking, she went back to class and told Beaver's daughter: "I just got a lick for going to the bathroom. You're next." Soon, the phone rang in the classroom, with an administrator calling Beaver's daughter to the office.

On the way, Beaver's daughter stuffed toilet paper into the seat of her pants to cushion the blow she expected would be coming.

Beaver's daughter entered the administrative area, saying: "Go ahead. Give me licks. My mom will be up here in a minute."

According to Beaver's daughter, Frazier asked, "Don't you want to know what you're getting licks for?"

Frazier tells students to put their hands on the wall to steady themselves when he gives them one to three swats with a wooden paddle, according to Beaver's daughter.

Only Frazier and Weathersbee are authorized to give licks, Weathersbee said. An administrator -- usually a female -- is always present, he said.

"We always give them a choice of ISS or swats. And they usually take swats," he said.

Weathersbee said Frazier delivers all the swats and will give him a report at the end of the year about how many swats he delivers. However, at this time, Weathersbee said he had no idea how many City View students receive swats at his school in a week's or a month's time.

"I wouldn't even be able to guess. I'm not tracking how many he's giving," he said.

City View School Board member Mary Ward said Friday she did not want to comment on what happened Thursday because she did not know the details. But she supports the swat policy, she said.

"Yes, because they need to learn discipline. A lot of them don't have discipline at home. They're going to get out in the real world, and things aren't going to be peaches and cream," Ward said.

When reminded that the real world doesn't deliver swats to teenagers, Ward emphasized that students are given a choice of what type of punishment they want to receive.

"I am not for (giving swats) every time some little something goes wrong," she said. "There are certain criteria for giving licks. I don't have a copy of that. They don't give licks to be giving licks."

Ward would not comment directly when asked if it was appropriate for a male administrator to spank a fully developed young woman on her bottom, even if she had behaved badly. "It depends on what the situation is," she said. "I don't know what the circumstances are."

These two girls are not troublemakers or disrespectful, and such punishment seemed unnecessary, said both mothers.

"There's nothing in their rule books that says she's going to get a lick for going to the bathroom," Beaver said. "She wasn't tardy."

Her daughter had been sick lately and was using the bathroom more than usual, she said.

"(Frazier) tried to tell me, 'I've been real fair with your kids.' I said: 'This ain't fair. She's on her time (during the 4-minute passing period). This is bull----. If you need to get up and go to the damn bathroom, you get up and go,'" Beaver said.

In general, she said she supports the school's policy to give "swats" to children who act out disruptively.

"If she's throwing chairs or throwing food or pulling the curtains off the damn building, I don't mind (them giving swats). But for going to the bathroom? I think you've crossed your boundaries with that," Beaver said.

Beaver said because of problems during her children's elementary years in City View she purposely put in their files that they were to be given freedom to go to the bathroom when they needed to go.

City View Superintendent Steve Harris "is not reachable today," according to City View administrators.

Beaver was so upset about the incident that she called Wichita Falls attorney Steve Bjordammen for advice.

Bjordammen said under Texas law, school districts are given wide latitude about how to handle student discipline. Hitting -- which would be considered assault if done by one adult to another -- is exempted when administered by a parent providing what they believe to be reasonable discipline. There is a similar exemption for school administrators who are meting out discipline to a child enrolled in the school.

A parent can file a criminal assault complaint, but the justice system will simply recognize the specific exemption and be unable to proceed with a criminal case, he said. "This is nothing unique in the penal code," Bjordammen said. "It provides exemptions all the time for a whole host of different offenses."

If a parent doesn't like such rules, then he is best served by addressing the authority that governs the school: the school board.

"They have a right to fire that individual or to otherwise mete out punishment to that individual. They can adopt policies that cover these situations and demand that they be adhered to. The problem is, you're complaining ultimately to the authority that has put that person in that place of authority to begin with," Bjordammen said.

The only significant remedy is to find a different school for the child, he said. "For as many Mrs. Beavers as I can pull into my office and talk about how much they disapprove of this policy, I can bring in just as many parents who would say that that was handled absolutely right, that students need this level of discipline, that how they discipline keeps them on a straight and narrow path," he said. "You have just as many parents who will hip-hip-hooray it. ... That's the simple reason why the courts have said, 'We're not going to get involved in the day-to-day matters of how schools operate.'"

Bjordammen stressed that he had only heard Beaver's side of the story and could not make a judgment call on the situation, but that if she was truly upset, she should run for a spot on the school board or support a school board member who would vote for policies that she agreed with.

2010 Scripps Newspaper Group



Corpun file 22809

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newschannel6now.com (KAUZ-TV), Wichita Falls, Texas, 16 December 2010

City View Paddling Raising Questions About Discipline

Tim Barnosky
Newschannel 6

The paddling of two City View High School students is raising questions about the practice of corporal punishment in schools. The mother of one of the students is furious over the reason her daughter was spanked and is concerned over who doled out the punishment.

Charlotte Beaver said her 17-year-old daughter was spanked by City View Asst. Principal Daryl Frazier for using the bathroom after lunch. School officials disagreed.

City View principal Raymond Weathersbee said the school started a new policy around three or four weeks ago. Because of tardiness issues, students are no longer allowed to use the bathroom after lunch period is over. Weathersbee said they have 30 minutes to take care of everything they need to.

But, Beaver said her daughter was sick last Thursday and needed to use the bathroom. This is where school officials and Beaver begin to disagree.

According to Beaver, her daughter and another female student went to use the bathroom before the period was over. The bell rang while they were waiting in line. Beaver said her daughter used the restroom but made it to class on time and was punished simply for violating the new policy.

Weathersbee said a teacher told him she approached the girls before they went into the restroom and told them to go directly to class. The teacher said the girls disobeyed and used the bathroom anyway. That, said Weathersbee, is why the girls were punished.

Beaver said she was outraged when her daughter told her about the incident. "This wasn't warranted," she said. "I'm not gonna sit by and say it was. If your child needs to go to the bathroom, she needs to go."

Beaver also said she has an issue with an adult male administrator spanking a teenage girl. "I don't mind the corporal punishment if she's acting a fool," she said. "But, I don't think the men ought to be whipping the girls."

Weathersbee said he doesn't have a problem with the policy or the practice of male administrators punishing female students. And, he said, any policy changes would have to come from the superintendent.

City View Superintendent Steve Harris said he stands behind the policy and he sees no reason to change it.

Beaver said she won't take her kids out of City View over the incident. But, she would like to see a policy change and feels her daughter is owed an apology.

All content Copyright 2000 - 2010 WorldNow and KAUZ. All Rights Reserved.



blob RELATED VIDEO CLIP

Two-minute news segment from local TV station KAUZ (16 Dec 2010) of which the above report is an abbreviated version. It is stressed that the mother interviewed is not opposed to CP, but thinks it was unjustified in this particular case. She also doesn't think girls should be spanked by male administrators, and one might have thought that, to be prudent, the school district would have taken that issue on board, since so many people have raised it before, even in Texas, and many other school districts have had a "same sex" paddling policy for a long time.

HERE IS THE CLIP:

IMPORTANT: Copyright in this video material rests with the original copyright holders. This brief excerpt is reproduced under the "fair use" doctrine EXTERNAL LINK: opens in new window for private, non-profit, historical research and education purposes only. It must not be redistributed or republished in any commercial context.




Corpun file 22834

masthead

wlbt.com (WLBT-3 TV), Jackson, Mississippi, 21 December 2010

Coach suspended for whipping players returns

By Roslyn Anderson

RIDGELAND, MS (WLBT) - It's been a long awaited return for some, while not so welcomed for others.

Tuesday the Murrah High School coach suspended for whipping his players made a comeback that many hope will turn the tide.

Basketball Coach Marlon Dorsey quickly left the court having no words for the media immediately following his team's win over Warren Central High School.

When asked his reaction to the win Dorsey waved off the cameras.

"No, no comment," the embattled coach replied.

The Mustangs met the Vikings during the Ridgeland Shootout Basketball Tournament.

It was a hard fought come from behind victory with Dorsey on the sidelines for the first time after completing his Jackson Public School suspension for whipping players with a weight lifting belt.

Some parents who attended the game said it's time to forgive and forget.

Gary Love's son is a forward on the team who he said convinced him that the team needed Dorsey.

Love was initially was upset with the coach but changed his mind after meeting with him.

"I'm thrilled that he's back. The majority of the parents along with all of the players are glad that he's back. We're thrilled. This is behind us. We're gonna move forward with a new season, positive attitude and the kids are gonna respond well," said Love.

Others parents said the national attention is stressful for the players.

They said Dorsey's actions don't represent school practices.

"I'm just tired of all the negative publicity it has brought to the students and the players at the school, and it's not good for the kids. We need to get past this. We should have been gotten past this and forgiveness is in the Bible and everybody should forgive Coach Dorsey for what he has done," said Chauntessa Hines, the mother of a ninth grade basketball player.

On the court Dorsey continued an aggressive coaching style, expressing disappointment with mistakes but showing encouragement for good plays.

At half time the Mustangs were behind 23 to 35, then after emerging from the locker room the players rallied.

They trailed most of the game, until the close of the fourth quarter when Murrah won by ten points.

"The kids are gonna regroup and get an understanding of what he's doing, acclimated to what he's trying to do," added Love.

Jackson attorney Lisa Ross, who filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of three basketball players, was disappointed by Dorsey's return.

"JPS just doesn't get it. Obviously their policies aren't worth the paper they are written on. Maybe they'll understand a jury verdict against JPS," said Ross in a statement to WLBT.

The Murrah Mustangs meet Northwest Rankin Cougar in their next game on January 4th.

@2010 WLBT. All rights reserved.



blob RELATED VIDEO CLIP

Two-minute news segment from local TV station WLBT (21 Dec 2010) of which the above report is an abbreviated version.

HERE IS THE CLIP:

IMPORTANT: Copyright in this video material rests with the original copyright holders. This brief excerpt is reproduced under the "fair use" doctrine EXTERNAL LINK: opens in new window for private, non-profit, historical research and education purposes only. It must not be redistributed or republished in any commercial context.

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