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Terror in schools

Sir, — I refer to the article, "Terror in schools" (July 16). While only some schools resort to extreme forms of punishment, hitting students with a ruler or slapping them are common practices. Corporal punishment not only affects the child who is at the receiving end but also the other students watching its infliction.

Smitha Devara,
Hyderabad

* * *

Sir, — What is surprising is the tacit approval parents accord to corporal punishment. They equate it with strictness aimed at making their children perform better and score high marks. Schools capitalise on this mindset of the parent community and adopt the end-justifies-the-means approach. To make matters worse, the teachers are under tremendous pressure to produce results. Corporal punishment is thus the product of a vicious cycle.

Phani Madhav,
Thanjavur, T.N.

* * *

Sir, — A good teacher can make children learn without resorting to corporal punishment. Strict regimentation, apart from causing suicides, will also produce criminals or people with a slavish mentality.

V. Prasanna Kumar,
Kollam, Kerala

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