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ERIC Number: EJ1133780
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Nov
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0256-0100
Corporal Punishment Contestations, Paradoxes and Implications for School Leadership: A Case Study of Two South African High Schools
Makhasane, Sekitla Daniel; Chikoko, Vitallis
South African Journal of Education, v36 n4 Article 1316 Nov 2016
The continued use of corporal punishment in some South African schools and the reasons advanced for it make this subject topical even now, twenty years after the abolition of this practice. Corporal punishment is a worrying issue among human rights activists and scholars. This paper reports on contestations and paradoxes regarding the use of corporal punishment arising from a qualitative study in two high schools, and the implications thereof for school leadership. Data was generated through interviews with the principals, selected teachers and learners. These participants were purposively selected with the understanding that they were information-rich regarding the issues at stake. The paper was informed by a two-pronged theoretical framework, involving the social learning and distributed leadership theories. The former was adopted to seek explanation regarding the use of corporal punishment, while the latter served as a lens through which to draw implications for school leadership. Findings show that on the one hand, some community members at the two schools saw corporal punishment as an acceptable, tried and tested disciplinary measure, and that on the other hand, it is viewed as a form of violence, and a thing of the past. Overall, it seemed that the two schools were failing to root out the use of corporal punishment. The paper argues leadership to be the missing link in the two schools' apparent failure, and that the stronger and more distributed leadership was, the more likely corporal punishment would be to be eradicated, and other disciplinary means practised.
Education Association of South Africa. University of Pretoria, Centre for the Study of Resilience, Level 3, Groenkloof Student Centre, Department of Educational Psychology, Faculty of Education, George Storrar Road and Lleyds Street, Pretoria 0001, South Africa. Tel: +27-12-420-5798; Fax: +27-12-420-5511; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A