School corporal punishment legislation gridlocked on Capitol Hill
WASHINGTON (Gray DC) It’s a bill that remains held up in Congress, having a daily effect on children.
For almost a year, legislation that would end corporal punishment in schools remains on the back burner. Right now, only democratic lawmakers have signed onto a bill that would stop it.
Congressman Dave Loebsack (D-IA) is a cosponsor of H.R. 2268, a bill that would end corporal punishment in schools. It was sent to the House subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education last year, and hasn’t budged.
"To me it’s an absolute no-brainer,” said Loebsack. "We know that corporal punishment is not effective. It doesn’t do the job that they claim that it does.”
Congressman Buddy Carter (R-GA) sits on that subcommittee.
"Certainly corporal punishment is something we need to look at and we need to weigh in on, and we will certainly do that as time goes on,” said Carter.
How much time will that take?
"That’s up to the subcommittee Chairman and whether they want to act on it or not,” said Carter. "It has not come before us yet, and whether it does or not will be up to the Chairman.”
Off Capitol Hill, there’s been support from education organizations like the American Federation of Teachers.
“Our students cannot learn unless they feel physically and emotionally safe,” said AFT in a statement. "Physical discipline does nothing to help students solve conflicts or address problems, and it teaches students that violence is acceptable.”
Loebsack says lawmakers need to act now.
"So long as that kind of activity is occurring in the schools, we’re seeing children harmed,” said Loebsack.
As of now, there’s still no timeline as to when the subcommittee will take up Loebsack’s bill.