WHAT CAN KIDS DO ABOUT PADDLING?
In 21 states educators can paddle children. That doesn’t mean it is right.
More than 50 organizations representing doctors, lawyers, teachers and others who care about the well-being of children say paddling is wrong and doesn’t work. Here are some reasons why: http://www.stophitting.com/disatschool/argumentsAgainst.php
If you are in a school district where kids get paddled,
Read the school discipline policy with your parents to see how and why you can be paddled so you will know the school rules.
If you don’t have a copy, you can get it from the board of education and, most of the time, you can look it up on your school district’s website.
If kids get paddled in your district, ask your parents to write a letter to the superintendent saying you should not be paddled and have your parents sign it, have a neighbor or your doctor sign it too, and send it to the teacher, principal and the superintendent.
You can find a letter sample http://www.stophitting.com/disatschool/lettertoteacher.pdf
Keep copies of it. Sometimes those records are lost at school.
If you are paddled:
You may feel very angry or very sad or very embarrassed. You may have all of those feelings. Sometimes you are punished for something which wasn’t your fault. If that happened, you are probably angry and feel this was very unfair. It was unfair. It is OK to have these feelings.
Even if you broke a school rule, it is wrong for adults to hit you. Teachers have training in how to deal with misbehavior and they shouldn’t be hitting kids with boards.
If you are injured as a result of the paddling- if you have bruises or bleeding or have trouble sitting:
You should make sure that adults who love you know that you are injured. They should take color photos of your injury.
It may be embarrassing to show bruises on private parts of your body to a parent, but they may not be able to help you unless they can see the bruises or welts. At least try to talk them into taking you to a doctor or emergency room right away, while the injury is visible, so that the doctor can see for him/herself. If you are at the doctor’s, ask if the doctor is supposed to report child abuse injuries to the police or child abuse agencies in your town, and encourage the doctor to go ahead and do that.
Your parents or guardians should go to child protective services and to the police or sheriff to report your injury and show them the photos of your injury. While it may be legal for teachers to hit children in some schools, it is not legal for them to injure you.
If you have trouble sleeping or you are crying a lot because of this, you need to let people know who love you and care about you so they can help. Ask your parents to contact us for more information.