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Board of Education Applied to the Seat of Learning

Updated on September 26, 2016

The Law of the Paddle

I will never forget walking into my first junior high school home room class. The transition from elementary school to the next level coupled together with all those crazy hormonal changes of coming to the age of adolescence didn't make things any easier. There were some things that had remained the same. Our first lecture covered discipline and rules of conduct given us by Mrs Clara-belle Clark, a stern looking lady whose hair had long been gray and her insidious smile made me cringe.

"People" she said. "You are now in junior high." With that introduction we were given the code of conduct expected and set by the school administration. No Chewing gum! No tardiness will be tolerated! You boys that have sneakers on right now, you must buy another pair for gym! The list went on and as she finished her oratory, she gently opened her desk drawer and pulled out a leather razor strap. Shaking it convincingly before the class she left no doubt as to whether she would use it if a need arose. Infractions of the rules might just get you a few lashes from my leather strap!

We were no strangers to corporal punishment and there was a firm belief quick correction yielded a good result. There were times we had seen students who misbehaved get spankings from our teachers. Most of the time the guilty were taken outside the classroom but we could hear the spankings administered to the bad boys and sometime girls. A few raps on the rear end or on the palm with a ruler were the extent of the punishment. Some of us laughed because so and so had gotten a spanking but we all knew the punishment fit the crime and the embarrassment of a spanking was at times worse than the spanking itself.

As we left our elementary school the corporal punishment became less common. Teachers used another means of punishment. Writing a few hundred times,"I must not chew gum in class." or some other sentence was a punishment none liked. Leave it to the ingenuity of some student to use a rubber band to bind three pencils together to write those words of wisdom, in some cases at least 500 times. A few teachers soon got wise to the multiple pencil trick and the sentences bordered on a paragraph!

Today in most states corporal punishment is something almost unheard but for those of us who grew up in the 1950's and 1960's I feel we became better people knowing our bad behavior would not be tolerated and we might suffer the wrath of our infractions by the board of education being applied to the seat of learning. As a matter of record I never received a paddling during my school career not because I was a good kid but mainly because I never got caught in my menace. My parents always told me and my siblings if we got a spanking at school for misbehaving, we would get another one when we got home.

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    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      I remember the days when the principal could administer paddlings to those who required extra incentive at at school. I also was spanked at home for extreme behavior. Today, I believe some people would not know how to properly use the spanking methods to discipline children.

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 5 years ago from UK and Mexico

      We were caned at school. Sometimes judiciously, oft times, brutally. There was one sadist who caught the ends of the boy's fingers with the cane; another, who insidted on slashing the cane across quivering bottoms - you don't have to be a rocket scientist to know what he did at home.

      I'm against it, and all forms of violence against weaker or defenceless recipients.

      I think writing lines was a greater punishment for impatient kids...

      But you may be right.

      Bob

    • Fiddleman profile image
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      Robert Elias Ballard 5 years ago from Zirconia, North Carolina

      From early spankings we learned behavior not acceptable would result in punishment. Today time out and taking time to reason with children does produce results but the main idea is to be consistent and firm in our resolve to change the bad behavior to one of respect and obedience.

    • Fiddleman profile image
      Author

      Robert Elias Ballard 5 years ago from Zirconia, North Carolina

      You're probably right. Our grandsons get spankings and time out. They do not like either but hopefully lessons will soon be learned and the spankings and time out will be less.

    • samsons1 profile image

      Sam 5 years ago from Tennessee

      Good job Fiddleman, and I likewise remember those days. The teachers ruled and should in the classroom. Today, it's a mockery, no discipline and just look at what the schools are producing. Gang members and dope dealers that openly defy correction and their parents just give up on them and turn them over to society. It's a shame. I'm for correction and think it ought to be enforced. Anyone can see the results of no correction but watching the evening news each day. The Bible teaches it, but a Godless society that dismisses God and His teaching can't see because of their own mistakes. I wrote an article on Moma Used a Switch and got all sorts of negative comments, some people even claimed child abuse. I disagree. We all need correction. Voted up and beautiful...

    • Fiddleman profile image
      Author

      Robert Elias Ballard 5 years ago from Zirconia, North Carolina

      Thank you my friend and I think you are right. A little hickory tea governed by love goes a long way to produce children who make productive law abiding citizens.

    • Al Greenbaum profile image

      Al Greenbaum 3 weeks ago from Europe

      I like your metaphor, "The Seat of Learning". I think it is important that children are taught responsibility for their actions and also responsibility for the people they come into contact with.

      Unfortunately, there are a growing number of parents who think their kids are wonderful and should never have to strive for what they get - it should be handed to them on a plate. They make things really difficult for teachers.

    • Fiddleman profile image
      Author

      Robert Elias Ballard 3 weeks ago from Zirconia, North Carolina

      Thank you Al for your comment and for taking time to do so. Society has changed and bad behavior glossed over. we are reaping the results and see the results in the news and talk shows. Spare the rod,spoil the child has merit.

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