Corporal punishment in schools sparks debate

Local school spanking allegations feed controversy

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HOUSTON - Allegations of a school spanking that went too far have reignited the debate about corporal punishment in schools.

Lisa Day told Local 2 she gave permission the principal at Nottingham Middle School to paddle her son, Dalton, but she wasn't expecting to have to take him to the emergency room.

"I expected maybe a red bottom but not that," said Lisa Day.  "Not welts and bruises and broken bones."

The incident is now being investigated by the school district, CPS, and the police. It also has people once again sounding off about corporal punishment.

"You're teaching a child to hate school," said Dr. Harvey Rosenstock, a Bellaire psychiatrist. "You're teaching a child to be afraid. I think it's not really changing behavior; it's generating anger."

Rosenstock doesn't believe spanking has a place in homes or in schools.  Others disagree.

Democrat State Representative Harold Dutton has been an outspoken supporter of corporal punishment.

"Given the way we are treating children now who are misbehaving by simply expelling them or sending them to alternative school--sometimes the alternative is far more tragic than a swat with a paddle," Dutton told Local 2.

The issue and the allegations sparked hundreds of comments on our Local 2 Facebook page.  Some agreed the principal crossed the line, while others said being spanked as a child was an effective deterrent to bad behavior.

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