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School CP - February 1980


The Times, London, 6 February 1980

Heads may deliver caning only with pupils' consent

From Ivor Davis
Los Angeles, Feb 5

It will be no longer spare the rod and spoil the child for pupils in Los Angeles schools. The local board of education voted today to restore corporal punishment but only as a last resort -- and only if both the offending pupil and his parents give their permission.

press cuttingThe somewhat watered down caning rules were approved by a four to one vote after almost two years of deliberation. Spanking in Los Angeles schools was abolished in 1975.

School officials, who welcomed the return of this form of corporal punishment were ordered to draw up fairly tight guidelines to limit the use of the stick and they did. They have been calling for the return of the old system of punishment which Mr Richard Ferraro, a member of the education board, refers to as "applied psychology to the behind."

After the Los Angeles vote, Mr Seymour Feshbach, chairman of the psychology department of the University of California at Los Angeles, said: "Most scientists would argue that corporal punishment is likely to facilitate the very delinquent or anti-social behaviour that you are trying to punish or repress."

Under the new rule a pupil can receive as the most severe penalty only three strokes. But before punishment is carried out school officials must receive consent from the student and his parents.

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