Paddling school kids | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Paddling school kids

Posted By on Thu, Nov 23, 2006 at 7:27 PM

We heard an interesting interview on KUAR yesterday with the Murfreesboro school superintendent about the buttocks-bruising paddling of a 12-year-old there. She defended the beating as falling within school guidelines. But KUAR reports that a battery charge has been filed against the coach who administered it.

Meanwhile, circulating on the Internet is a letter to the Nashville newspaper about the paddling, also discussed here recently. The letter is from a Colorado resident who attended Pulaski County schools. Her letter:

Letter to writer John Balch of the Nashville Leader about the
Murfreesboro school paddling incident
By Barbara Neff, November 22, 2006

Hello, Mr. Balch.

Your article concerning Coach Davey Jones of Murfreesboro Schools striking a child on the buttocks with a board so hard the child suffered bruises is circulating the internet.

My personal hope is the family of the boy will prevail in the courts. However, experience has shown this to be unlikely in states such as Arkansas, where the striking of children by adults in schools is widely sanctioned legally and culturally.

Though the use of violent forms of "discipline" in your schools is shocking and sad, the saddest facet of this primitive practice is the failure of leaders to recognize the damage done to children. Responsible adults lead by example. Responsible adults teach children violence is never an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Responsible, compassionate parents and educators know the risk of damage to a child's self esteem outweighs any potential benefit from short term manipulation of a child's behavior through the use of fear, pain, bullying.

I attended Pulaski County (Arkansas) Public Schools in the sixties and seventies. Painful memories of teachers and coaches striking children, and preying on them in a variety of other ways, remain. At my thirty year reunion recently a former football player talked of being struck with a board on the buttocks so hard by a coach at our school he was bruised. Tears welled in this man's eyes as he spoke of his humiliation and how he struggled to cope as a teen with a brave face. This man, now fifty years old, is haunted by the brutal treatment.

Violence begets violence, Mr. Balch. How can we be so slow to catch on?

Thank you for your fine article. I hope you will continue to cover development of events surrounding the battering of the boy by Coach Davey Jones. Chances are, unfortunately, it will be the child who suffers ongoing indignities. He (and his family) will likely receive little support. The boy will likely be subjected to ridicule, labeled a "trouble-maker" and worse. My heart breaks for him. Will you find it in your heart to call for support for him within your community?


Barbara Neff
Castle Rock, Colorado

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (7)

Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Charter school accountability: Non-existent in Arkansas

    A state audit finds charter school spending violated state law, but the state Education Department says it has no responsibility for ensuring proper management of charter schools. Say what?
    • Mar 5, 2016
  • The inspiring Hillary Clinton

    Hillary Clinton's campaign for president illustrates again the double standard applied to women. Some writers get it. They even find the supposedly unlikable Clinton inspiring.
    • Oct 16, 2016
  • Policy group urges opposition to new charter seats in Little Rock

    The Arkansas Public Policy Panel is urging supporters of the Little Rock School District to tell state Board of Education members they oppose applications to be heard this week to dramatically expand the number of charter school seats in the Little Rock School District.
    • Mar 9, 2016

Most Shared

  • Guest Playlist: Flap Jones of "Not Necessarily Nashville" schools us on real country music

    "Not Necessarily Nashville," which airs on KUAR-FM 89.1 every Saturday, 7 p.m.-9 p.m., celebrates three decades of the "best of the rest of country music" Saturday, October 21 at the White Water Tavern with Brad Williams of The Salty Dogs & The Creek Rocks, and we asked host Flap Jones to curate a playlist for us ahead of that anniversary celebration.
  • Discussion: State killing of the mentally ill

    The Arkansas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty and others will have a forum on mental illness and the death penalty at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Bowen School of Law's Friday Courtroom.

Most Viewed

  • Hog football: The lawyers take over

    If you believe social media, it's all over but the post-season buyout for Razorback football coach Bret Bielema. That means, in turn, that the issue of what the coach's contract buyout is worth is not just an academic question.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Sunday open line

    • When 3000 of the worlds top architects, engineers and physicist tell the American Public that…

    • on October 22, 2017
  • Re: Sunday open line

    • Record - I *am* the grandma.

    • on October 22, 2017
  • Re: Sunday open line

    • How about smoked filled pool halls with the stale beer smell and the last Place…

    • on October 22, 2017



© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation