THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Gone are the days when school teachers controlled students using a cane as part of enforcing discipline. In an order issued last month, the General Education Department has prohibited the use of canes in schools as part of corporal punishment.
The order said the sale of canes in the open market will also be prohibited. All the headmasters have been directed to inform the teachers, the order said. Earlier, the Kerala State Commission for Protection of Child Rights had instructed the state government to ban canes in schools. The instruction came after several complaints from parents that corporal punishment still continued in some schools. Under Section 17 of the Right to Education Act (RTE), corporal punishment is banned in schools.
Two months ago, a controversy erupted in Kochi following allegations that a student of a private school was thrashed by a teacher for speaking in Malayalam in class. A Class V student of Assisi Vidyaniketan Public School at Njarackal in Ernakulam district was beaten up by an English teacher for talking to his friends in Malayalam. However, when contacted, the school management authorities said the teacher was not the official staff of the school.
The teacher was later terminated. Last year, the child rights commission had also sought an explanation from a school in Malappuram after a Class II student was admitted to hospital following corporal punishment. The student was hospitalised after the vein on his hand was cut when he was beaten with a metal ruler by his teacher for failing to appear for the exam.