Governor and State Board of Education
United States of America

Dear Governor, Kentucky Board of Education members and State Legislators,

We are writing to alert you to a gross and unconscionable violation of schoolchildren's fundamental human rights. The practice to which we refer is universally condemned by recognized leaders in the fields of pedagogy and psychology.

Nevertheless, it is widespread, and those with the authority to correct it either are unaware of the problem, or pretend to be unaware.

The United States is the only Western industrialized democracy that permits schoolchildren to be punished by being battered on the buttocks with a wooden board. This practice, known as "paddling," is legal in 20 states, and occurs approximately 1/4 million times per year. Such blatant child abuse has many well-documented negative effects, and no benefits.

It is one of the causes of the high rate of drop-out that afflicts public schools in paddling states such as Kentucky. It promotes violence by modeling violence. It signals its users' incompetence. The time is past due for all educators to be held to a higher standard of professionalism -- one that guarantees a safe, nurturing, violence-free environment to every school child.

There are a disproportionate amount of minorities paddled as well according to a report by the ACLU which can be found at

The GAO recently released a report showing that there is also a disproportionate amount of children with disabilities who were injured, sometimes fatally, due to seclusion and restraint in the classroom. That report can be found at

We the undersigned citizens of the Commonwealth of Kentucky demand that corporal punishment be removed from Kentucky Schools. We request immediate legislation be drafted and enacted to protect the children of Kentucky.

This petition was created by Jennifer Hacker, a child rights advocate with

Sign this petition

Verify (check then click Sign) [?]

GoPetition respects your privacy.

Petition tags: