Children Risk Being Expelled If Parents Opt To Exclude Them From Corporal Punishment

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The Minister of Education says that under the current legislation, a parent can decide to exclude his/her child(ren) from corporal punishment however the alternatives would include measures resulting in the child(ren) being removed from the school when infractions deserving of corporal punishment would have been administered.

This was revealed in a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, discussing the appropriateness of corporal punishment being administered in schools, and the guidelines that have been published in order to prevent abuse.

The government says, according to Chief of Staff Lionel Hurst, that they will allow the technical team to continue to make its assessment of the practice and the impact on overall management of schools.

No specific timeline was determined; rather, reports by the administrators would continuously be made and assessed.

As it relates to the administration of corporal punishment, the guidelines state that a principal/his or her designate shall use (a) a leather strap no longer than thirty (30) inches, one and a-half (1½) inches wide and not more than a quarter (1/4) inch thick in the case of secondary schools, and (b) in the case of a primary school, a leather strap no longer than 24 inches, one and a quarter (1¼) inches wide and no more than a quarter (1/4) inch thick.

The student should be informed of the reason he/she is being punished and how many strokes they will receive on their buttocks; there must be a third person in the room (not a student) when punishment is being administered; there will be a maximum of six strokes (6) for secondary school students and no more than four (4) strokes for primary school students.

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42 COMMENTS

  1. Why would a teacher in this day and age want to take up the responsibility to administer corporal punishment to a child, when they know that they have children, teachers be careful

    • Why would parents in this day and age want to SHIRK RESPONSIBILITY for raising their children and instilling certain values AT HOME. Why in this day and age do parents insist on dumping rude-ass, disrespectful children on school and by extension society? IF they were rightly trained at home to begin with, then there would be no DISRESPECTFUL behaviour in the classroom for teachers to contend with. If parents of rude-ass children na want no teacher to punish (not abuse) dem pickney, then HOMESCHOOL THEM!!!!!! Let them disrespect their own parents at home and in public. Save the teachers the stress and drama.

  2. Teachers should not have the rights to “hit”any child in Schools.Children should be punished by their parents.Some of you teachers are cruel towards children.I have seen teachers abuse those children they did not like.I remembered telling a teacher once not to hit me again.She was hitting me for something someone else had done.She told me she hit me because I laughed at the time.I went home and told my mother what had happen.The following day my mother came to school with me and met with the Head Master.The teacher was called to the office.I explained to the Head Teacher what took place and exactly what I told her.He asked her apologize to me with my mother there.She did and after that we developed a very good relationship in class.By the way I grew to be a law abiding citizen.I have never been arrested,never been to Court,never been in a Police Cruiser,never been to a Police Station never been to Jail and or Prison.The only infractions I have ever had with law enforcers.I drive above the speed limits and get pulled over and be ticketed.By Cops of all Colors,males and females.I paid those fines in all States where the infractions took place.If I had a child in school.No Teacher would be allowed to hit my child.Like I said earlier some Teachers are very abuse in the classes.

  3. Now who will determine what is deserving of “corporal punishment” is there going to be a guideline for this?

  4. I think the parents should be inform of the punishment.why in 2019 they trying to come up with this law.they should come up with a law to sort out the school children liming in town after hours.some teachers a very very spiteful. children tell lies on others why should a child get lash because of another child lies. I think this is nonsense .lash is not going to solve the problem. I don’t want nobody to beat my child.let we the parents discipline our child or children.

  5. I went to school between the years 1973 to 1985. During my years in Primary school, I had received corporal punishment for being late and for working out a math homework problem on the chalkboard wrong and had it right in my exercise book. In Secondary school, I received corporal punishment for fighting in my first year enrolled. I have known of other students who had received corporal punishment for fighting, etc… some almost every week.
    To say all this, I believed in corporal punishment in school. Back then corporal punishment was administered in school and most of those students turned out to be good citizens in society. Even your parents would show up at school and administered latches in front of the entire school.
    Lot of the children for today are not being punish at home, so they would take their bad behavior/attitude on the schools compound making it difficult for teachers and other students to function properly.
    I support corporal punishment into the school for today and it must be administer correctly.

    • Most of these kids today want “willy” that taught at T N KIRNON SCHOOL WILLY LOVE TO BANG BADDDD ppl pikney….HE AND THAT SUTTON LOVE THROW THAT LEATHER BELT if they still taught most of these illiterate rude kids and dem moma would have gotten beaten…

      Most of the young parents today are illiterate and they raise their kids to be illiterate like them in my days of going school ….you wouldnt dare a teacher muchless tarrrrkkk back ….

      They hear how their parents talk so they follow suit …
      Sad sad sad

    • Notes From A Native Son Of The Rock! “Child Left In The Wilderness Will Learn To Catch Ghost.” – CnD’ Adrienne Quashie!

      “He got into trouble on his first day because of his long hair. … Principal, Brother English, was having none of that. // He bent Vere over a desk in his office and applied a couple of blows to his backside with a ruler. He told Vere he’d get more of the same for each day he came back with his hair like that. Brother English said he didn’t want any radicals or Rastas or other such future bums in his school. Vere didn’t have a clue what he was talking about but he figured some things were to know and others just to do.” – Antigua’s Joanne C. Hillhouse: The Boy From Willow Bend!

      “Here we had sacrificed everything: our fragile childhood dreams and simple wish to rule the roof of our house. Here, we saw ourselves through new masks, with old restored dance steps and partners.” Antigua’s Edgar O Lake: The Devil’s Bridge!

      There is need for a new paradigm that will expose the ways to collectively create, regulate and sustain better unequal behavioural relationships within the society’s political, economic, socio-cultural, technological, legal and ecological structures that are evident in school policies program and practices. Antigua’s Dr. Carl E. James, recipient of the The 2019 MARCUS GARVEY MEMORIAL AWARD: Life At The Intersection!

  6. If parents do NOT want their misbehaving children to receive CP, then they can keep them home and teach them. Plain and simple.

    • LOL! Jamal Pringle is first coz up to now he nah know how fu patch 2 sentence together properly. He clearly skipped out on school when his mother sent him. Either that or he fell asleep in class. Same way he put ppl to sleep with his “presentation” in our nation’s legislature. Lash he to fu mek him wake up!

  7. Do any child health professionals in Antigua, who is knowledgable about “evidence based” research communicate with the Ministry of Education? There are many psychological studies that clearly show that corporal punishment is an ineffective form of discipline which has many negative consequences, not only for the child and their mental health, but for society as a whole.

  8. From slavery to domestic violence, the very idea that our people are taught to believe that there can be any circumstances whatsoever where they deserve to be physically beaten, and that they should stand and passively take blows meted out to them, is sickeningly wrong. Moreover, the correlated idea, that any person has the right to exact physical violence upon another, either because of their position in society or in the family, or just because they happen to be bigger or older, is dangerous. Even if Antigua had the highest standards in teacher recruitment and teacher training, and teachers’ professional practice was evaluated by rigorous in-service professional supervision, and even if every school had a Parent Teachers Association robust enough to play a role in scrutinising school disciplinary policies and procedures, and even if in addition, school pupils and their parents could confidently call upon a formal and independent complaints procedure if things go wrong; even if Antigua had all that, yet still teaching any girl or boy that there can be circumstances where they must passively accept being physically beaten is dangerous, on both a personal and political level. It does not appear to me that at this stage, there are open and transparent systems in place at every school to draw a clear and defensible line between corporal punishment and physical abuse. Developing education policy for a modern society with limited resources is challenging. Bringing up and educating children is difficult. Growing up can be tough too. If things are going wrong and children’s behaviour reflects this, parents, teachers and children need all the support from wider society that they can get. Beating the children, or excluding them from school is not the way forward. I’m confident that through working together collectively, policy makers, parents, pupils and teachers could come up with much more creative and effective solutions.

    • I love you. I do not know who you are but your words make me fall in love with you and hate those idiots. This literally stirs up memory and anger. Have you even been beaten until your hand or finger is broken? Have you ever had a teacher tell you to stand up on your chair with your hands in the air and eyes close because you told this teacher it is wrong for him to watch the girls butt and make sexual remarks and lick your lips to your female student, who is also only 13 years old? This was another foreigner teaching in Antigua, senior Ben, from Guyana.

      You wonder why I am at the border of hating Antigua, you know how often Antigua caused me to be abused. Just like the famous Gymnast just cried on national Tv saying the organisation did not protect her. I am crying saying the country did not protect me.

      I was not a rude person, never misbehaved in class. But was tortured in secondary School by those two Foreigners, weirdly it was only the two foreigners. One from Jamaica and other from Guyana. The Mr. Wilson mathematic teacher would come drunk and strong smelling or alcohol. But did anyone do anything? nope. You evil pieces of nothing, referring to all the Government ministers and others in-charge who did nothing. I hate you guys, die.

    • Completely agree!!!!!! Now why come up with more creative solutions?? That takes work!! Just beat the crap out of them done! In this nation of ours we should not have any more Draconian laws like this!!!!!

  9. In this day and age black people still trying to rationalize banging their children just like our forefathers use to get on the plantation. Since we want to legalize banging of children, how about a law for flogging big prople in the public square when found guilty of certain heinous crimes?

  10. Long overdue….already thought this topic would generate a fair amount of pros and cons; however for what these teachers are experiencing in schools today it’s about time we reinstate flogging and like the article states within guidelines. Bearing in mind teachers have classes with about twenty children from different environment and trying to teach those whom are been attentive while the rude one misbehave and sometime threaten teachers. The majority of those who oppose are rude parents themselves where the child get away with thing at home and think they can go into public places and do the same, so they are the one who will try to convince authorities that corporal punishment doesn’t reduce misbehaving in schools. PLEASE BRING IT BACK Ministry, or we will soon have the problem the USA is facing. Check around the world….which other country does one hear have so many school shooting? [And] some are trying to model our system after theirs?

    • You want to check around the world??? Then DO so!!!! Corporal punishment is completely forbidden in schools in the VAST majority of the “developed world”, not just the USA…..want to check the rate of school shootings??? You are very confused, corporal punishment will not stop school shootings, not having access to purchase guns as if they are lollipops IS part of the solution.

  11. I have mixed feelings about invoking corporal punishment….. Physical punishment usually bring about animosity & revenge is seeked…..Now if two students commit the same offence and hence, warrent punishment, how can we guarantee that both students will be beaten the same relative the weight & force of the beating…. There are many factors that can contribute to both parties not being punished equally the same. In my view there are many alternative punishments that can be invoked and considered fairer & less discriminatory and still, one can the same outcome or even better

  12. Venetta Johnson whoever you are, go to the head of the class. In fact you should make a presentation to cabinet.
    I myself have never examined corporal punishment from this particular perspective but once you frame this practice in terms of physical violence then it raises the question as to who has the right or authority over another (even their children) to exact this form of physical abuse. Can a child report a teacher or parent after receiving a flogging? What position does the law take? Questions questions questions,

    JFII, a word to the wise.

  13. I want to know where can I send the pictures of the abuse my child underwent at the hands of a teach!!! I still have them!!! No teacher is beating my child!!! None!!!!

    • There is a difference between ABUSE and PUNISHMENT. The article says “…exclude them from corporal punishment…” It NEVER mentioned “…exclude from ABUSE…” so please do not confuse the two.

      • The line between punishment and abuse is VERY thin!, Too thin!!! Best way not to cross it? Simple: no corporal punishment.

        • Darn right ..Just like there is a thin line between Love and Hate..there is a thin line between Abuse and Punishment!

  14. This conversation is not unique to Antigua. Many so called civilized countries has gone through this before. Many studies have been conducted on this practice. And we have therefore a wealth of material available to make what I would call informed decisions. Of course it will take ages for some people to adjust and change their position. But every generation will do things different than the generation before them. And in what can be called wisdom we do not always agree that the future is much better than the past. That is why we always talk about the good old days. In that case do we want to go back to slavery? We were beaten than and that didn’t deter us from fighting for our rights to be free. Although some of us still suffer from many of the mental issues that came from slavery.
    I know I raised my children different than my parents because I did not like the beating. But I was stern with my children. And now they are raising their children different than how I have raised them. Much more liberal I must say. And to bring it to biblical prophecy. It is true that a child will lead them. Just look at the latest Strike for the Environment lead by a child. Global Climate Strike. Parenting is changing and the young parents need to learn how to raise children properly.

  15. Do you know the amount of abuse I got in school in Antigua? One teacher beat me until the skin of my back came off and blood run down my back, Jamaican Mathematics teacher at JSS, Wilson. Because I got up and wanted to urinate, and he did not allow me to so I attempted to walk out the class to use the bathroom. He grabbed me, through me on the floor, started beating me, until the skin of my body came off and my shirt had blood on it. I was in pain for days.

    if I see that jamaican Wilson who teached in Antigua again, I promise you, today as an attorney, I will end up in Prison. I promise i would give up my career for that teacher who also molested students at JSS. You have a criminal Jamaican teacher in Antigua abusing and molesting the girls and bullied the boys. I have a son and anyone does that to my child, I will kill them. I was a afraid to tell my mother and my father because they too do not like misbehaviour and thought they would believe the teacher over me. The weird thing is I was just talking to my mother about how it affects me up to this day. If people want to do things to make a difference find this former Maths teacher from JSS and deal with him proportionately.

    I think spanking is appropriate in some situation but very rare and very careful and should be done by a particular teacher the students respect and love. literally reading this is making hate the education Minister and I am a fan of ABLP

  16. There is no need and justification to advocate, mandate and inflict student corporal punishment throughout the school system in accordance with the laws of (the nation/village) A&B. The student corporal laws should (must) be changed. We are better than that! Vennetta Johnston’s comment should (must) provide a framework for any gov’t to enact appropriate laws to go forward in the tireless and long pursuit of educating children for the development of the healthy mind in a healthy body. Learning in all aspects for Hunan development requires and involves changing the minds of students to achieve success in certification and employability from the school system in A&B. Every child can learn and develop. John French II refers to Dr Carl E James, recipient of The 2019 Marcus Garvey Memorial Award and in the memori of Marcus Garvey are his words: “God and Nature first maka us what we are, and then out of our own created genius we make ourselves what we want to be. Follow always that great law. Let the sky and God be our limit and Eternity our measurement.

  17. I grew up in Antigua went to school in Antigua from 1977-1986. I look back now and shake my head to think what kids got the belt for in school, something little such as opening their eyes when told to keep close or unfolding their arms when told to do so (kids being kids), this was totally not necessary. Because we lived that way growing up does not mean as you get older your views cannot change as you learn about mental health issues, learning disabilities and abuse. Consider a child being abused at home now comes to school and probably acts out due to what is happening at home then gets beaten again at school. What does that do for that child than makes that child now take it out on someone else i.e a classmate or someone they feel they now can have power over.

    I do agree that some children are not being disciplined at home but that does not mean the discipline at home even has to entail being beaten. Correcting a child, letting them know right from wrong, showing disappointment in the child for their actions and other means are still punishment to be able to correct a child. Before you say oh that is someone with no child speaking, well I do have a 13 year old son and those forms of punishment I stated is what I use with my son and he does know right from wrong and knows how to stand up for those values among his peers.

    These beatings stay with someone through adulthood and gets passed on by in turn adults abusing their children, coupled with mental health issues, economic issues etc,. Schools should be able to have a system that there are different levels of discipline until it reaches to expulsion (spoken to, detention etc.), school should be of learning and a safe place.

    Looking at that form posted angers me, it’s funny the island tries to be so forward moving when it comes to money coming to the country (celebs, big hotels etc) but not in certain areas like this piece of paper notification about a child getting beaten and how many lashes what year are we in. I am not one that likes to dwell on slavery as I feel that we need to propel our selves and not live in the past (can’t move forward if you live in the past mentality) but this gives the felling of being whipped in the fields by someone and then providing evidence to the slave master that the slave was whipped and because of this act.

    I really thought this education Minister would bring a revised way to support the children in the schools but felling very disappointed.

  18. Why you guys don’t go punish the jail men, Corporal Punishment the men that kill people, execute them. why you want come and mess with our children, the parent should be the only one to discipline. This is mentally going to damage our youth. This sound like abuse or move over like slavery days, when you’re on the plantation and you have to line up for your lash. This makes me sick, I cant imagine someone beating my daughter on her butt. Sickening

  19. One of the major reasons why corporal punishment persists is that most of us find it difficult to differentiate and understand that it is different from “discipline.” While corporal punishment seeks to stop a child from behaving in a certain way, positive discipline techniques can be used to make a child understand and learn desirable/acceptable behavior without the fear of punishment.

    Another major reason is that teachers are often not taught to think and reflect during their professional training, why children misbehave and how to discipline them in a positive manner. Their behaviors have to form the basis for a teacher’s strategies . Many a times, when a child feels his or her needs are not being met, such as the need for attention, he or she misbehaves. The frustration that child’s misbehavior causes, and lack of skills to handle it, makes many of the teachers strike out at children and use corporal punishment physical, verbal, mental or other forms of emotional punishment.

    When adults use corporal punishment it teaches their children that hitting is an acceptable means of dealing with conflict. The more children are hit, the more is the anger they report as adults and consequently the more they hit their own children when they are parents, and the more likely they are to approve of hitting.

    Long-term consequences of corporal punishment leads to adverse physical, psychological and educational outcomes – including increased aggressive and destructive behavior, increased disruptive behavior in the classroom, vandalism, poor school achievement, poor attention span, increased drop-out rate, school avoidance and school phobia, low self esteem, anxiety, somatic complaints, depression, suicide and retaliation against teachers – that emotionally scar the children for life.

  20. And that is why these young children and teens behave they way they do. Cause parents don’t want them to get a few lashes. Suspension and detention don’t work. These parents now want to treat their kids as if they all are on the same level. I remeber when I was going to school and I was rude to my teacher. My mom can and whooped my ass infront of my class and told my teacher not to send me home but give me lashes and send me back to class most of these school kids need a good whooping.

  21. Administering corporal punishment is certainly a sensitive subject. Spare the rod and spoil the child, in my view, does not litterally mean a physical rod but it means a form of discipline….. Getting physical with a child can create resentment and transform the child into a monster who was not intended to be….. On the other hand, the person inflicting the corporal punishment might be influenced by personal emotions and hence may or may not administer the punishment fairly….. A recent case in the US, with the female police shooting to death the young man in his own appartment and then get 10 yrs imprisonment was very questionable…. Was the sentence fair?? Did the judge’s emotions come into play when sentencing? Of course it was questionable…… But at the end of the day, the Judge is only human…..

    • Keep that “americanized” bullshit out of Antigua. No wonder they have so many school shootings and murders

  22. Does it work?
    Putting history, culture, tradition – and even law – aside, let’s just focus on what the scientific evidence tells us about the effectiveness of hitting our kids as a disciplinary tool.

    Supporters often rely on personal anecdotes to argue that school corporal punishment, for example, improves students’ behavior and achievement. Parents who hit their kids typically claim that they were struck during their childhood but turned out okay. However, there have been no studies reporting any benefits from hitting children.

    On the other hand, a recent report issued in June 2016 assessed more than 250 studies exploring the relationship between physically punishing our kids and a wide range of outcomes. The results of the numerous studies reveal the following negative effects of corporal punishment:

    Increased aggression
    Children who are hit are more likely to be aggressive toward their peers, approve of violence in relationships, bully others, and be aggressive toward their parents. Researchers from Tulane University found that children who are spanked often, starting at age three, are more likely to show aggressive behavior by the time they’re five than children who are not spanked.

    Aggression is a reflexive response to experiencing pain. When children grow up with the understanding that violence is an appropriate way to get what you want, they’ll mimic this behavior. In several surveys, children explain how they feel aggressive after being physically punished.

    Exacerbated bad behavior

    According to Sandra Graham-Bermann of the Child Violence and Trauma Laboratory at the University of Michigan, spanking may seem to stop bad behavior at the time, but in the long term it only makes the child behave worse.

    In fact, corporal punishment has been linked to negative behaviors like bullying, lying, cheating, running away, truancy, school behavioral problems, and involvement in crime.

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