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Wendy Chandler, Alabama Mom, Furious Over 'Corporal Punishment Consent Form'

Posted by on Sep. 20, 2013 at 10:27 PM
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1 mom liked this

When Wendy Chandler received a back-to-school packet from her daughter’s Alabama elementary school in late August, she thought there had been a mistake. Inside the packet was a form that sought her permission to administer physical force as a form of discipline on her child. Surely this wasn't a form from 2013.

But there was no mistake. This “Corporal Punishment Parental Consent Form” was apparently sent to parents of Leeds Elementary School, asking them to specify whether or not they want corporal punishment used on their child. Forms that are not returned to the district are seen as implicit consent.


"According to Leeds City Schools Public Policy, parents or legal guardians who do not want corporal punishment to be administered to their child/children must inform the principal of the school on an annual basis,” the permission slip reads, in part.

“I really thought I was seeing things. I had to read it a few times,” Chandler said on the phone to The Huffington Post. “I checked off the ‘no’ box, but I realized a lot of kids are going to have the ‘yes’ box checked off.”

She also scrawled an impassioned note on the bottom of the form: "I can not imagine how it would ever be ok to show violence towards anyone. Hitting a child is beyond disgraceful. Anyone who could hit a child should be put in jail."

Leeds is one of many school districts in 19 states that allow school administrators to use physical force against students, according to the Center for Effective Discipline.

In the 2005 – 2006 school year, 223,190 school children in the country had physical force used against them by educators, according to the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights. Approximately 4.5 percent of Alabama students were subjected to physical punishment that year -- the third-highest rate out of any state in the nation. And while nationwide support for corporal punishment is low, efforts to eradicate the practice seem mostly to be at a standstill, according to The New York Times.

Still, Chandler is trying to do her part to eradicate corporal punishment in her district and state. She started a petition asking President Obama and other elected officials to “STOP corporal punishment in all public schools,” and she is flooding the mailboxes of school administrators with literature about the dangers of physical discipline. She has also been in touch with fellow activists working to end corporal punishment across the country.

“I really don’t know what I’m doing, I’m just trying to change the rules,” Chandler told HuffPost. “My immediate concern is for all those other kids [whose parents checked yes on the form] because those children are my child’s future colleagues and neighbors.”

by on Sep. 20, 2013 at 10:27 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by Platinum Member on Sep. 20, 2013 at 10:28 PM
1 mom liked this


by Platinum Member on Sep. 20, 2013 at 10:30 PM

I would be furious too!


by Platinum Member on Sep. 20, 2013 at 10:32 PM

IDK if it wasn't posted already.

by Bronze Member on Sep. 21, 2013 at 2:13 AM
Someone in MC posted about being appalled by this. Wonder if its the same mom?
by Bruja on Sep. 21, 2013 at 2:23 AM
5 moms liked this

um, it doesn't say her kid HAS to, mark no and move on. This is really not quite the crisis situation people are trying to make it..spanking is still legal and lots of people do is not abusive and the school is certainly not going to be physically abusive. And since there is a difference between spanking and abuse let's just say hypothetically speaking the person spanking goes too far..then like if a parent doesn't understand discipline and abuse, cps can evaluate what is going on

by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 3:13 AM
1 mom liked this
Because spanking to everyone can be understood differently. I don't think schools should spank.
by Ruby Member on Sep. 21, 2013 at 3:35 AM
4 moms liked this

Given that parents who are anti-CP are going to be far more annoyed about their child being hit on one occasion, than a parent who is pro-CP would be about their child not being hit on one occasion, I find it suspicious that the school made this 'opt out' rather than 'opt in'.

by Bronze Member on Sep. 21, 2013 at 5:02 AM
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The only part of this that bothers me is the part where not checking a box is considered implied consent. Um, NO! I think the school shouldn't be allowed to do any kind of corporal punishment UNLESS they have a form in their hand with the 'yes' checked.

I'm not anti-corporal punishment. I don't care who spanks their kids, or who they give permission to spank. I don't feel like getting into a debate, but *IMO* there's a big difference between a spanking and a beating. My parents spanked me, and I deserved it every time. As for the topic at hand, I'm more worried that some parents might not turn in the form, or not fully read it before signing. Those parents are unknowingly giving consent for their children to be spanked. There shouldn't be implied consent in this type of situation. If the parent doesn't specifically say YES, then the answer should be no......not the other way around.

And FTR, I spank my kids, but all hell would break loose if anyone other than myself or DH laid a hand on our children. They are MY children, and WE are the ones who discipline them.

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