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Oklahoma Corporal Punishment in Public Schools Laws

Corporal punishment or paddling in public schools used to be common. Today, despite no statewide ban on the practice, it’s rare for corporal punishment to be used in Oklahoma schools. Many school districts abolished the practice. Only about 10% of school districts permit corporal punishment at all.

In the future, Oklahoma may join the 31 states that have already abolished this practice. The vast majority of research suggests corporal punishment is an ineffective disciplinary tool that harms, rather than helps children.

Estimated Number of Oklahoma Students Subjected to Corporal Punishment

In 2000, the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (OCR) estimated that 17,764 students in Oklahoma were subjected to corporal punishment at school. Interestingly, paddling of inmates isn’t generally permitted as cruel and unusual punishment, but paddling of minor schoolchildren is OK. Flogging hasn’t been used as a criminal punishment in the U.S. since 1952.

Oklahoma Corporal Punishment Laws

The following chart outlines the corporal punishment in public schools law in Oklahoma.

Code Sections Oklahoma Statutes Title 70, Section 24-100.4 – Control and Discipline of Child (part of the “School Safety and Bullying Prevention Act”)
Punishment Allowed In Oklahoma, the local school boards get to adopt the policy for the control and discipline of students in their school district, including whether or not corporal punishment is permitted.

If you don’t want your student be paddled at school, check with your local school district to see if the practice is still permitted in your schools. If it is, ask about any process of opting-out of corporal punishment for your student. You could also consider coming together with other parents to put pressure on the school district to ban the practice. To do this, you may want to consult with an experienced Oklahoma education lawyer.

Note: State laws are regularly revised. It’s important to consult with an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify these school discipline laws.

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