Some parents at Leeds Elementary Public School in Alabama were in for a shock when their kids brought home a permission slip for corporal punishment. It stated that failure to return the form would be considered authorization for school personnel to administer the punishment.

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Corporal punishment is legal in 19 states in America. Today in a debate on Fox and Friends, Peter Sprigg from the Family Research Council defended school’s actions. “There are some parents who see this as a legitimate form of punishment and are perfectly happy to delegate their authority and right to use disciplinary spanking to the school as a way of supporting the methods of discipline they use at home.”

Sprigg agreed that ultimately the decision should be left up to the parents.

Denise Schipani, a blogger and author of “Mean Moms Rule,” said it’s never okay for teachers to hit students. She noted that sometimes the forms kids bring home from school don’t always end up in the hands of parents. Therefore, she argued that it’s wrong for it to automatically give consent if the form isn’t returned to the school.  

As for studies that show children who experience corporal punishment are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety, Sprigg dismissed that as the difference between beating and disciplinary spanking.

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