HC Deb 01 August 1946 vol 426 cc1221-2
70. Sir T. Moore

asked the Minister of Education how many cases of the infliction of corporal punishment in the schools under her jurisdiction have been brought to her notice during the six months ended 30th June, 1946.

71. Mr. Peter Freeman

asked the Minister of Education how many cases of corporal punishment were inflicted on boys and girls, separately, last year; and whether she has any evidence that, in schools where this practice has been abolished, there has been any deterioration of discipline.

Mr. Hardman

Cases of corporal punishment are not brought to the notice of my right hon. Friend except on a complaint by the parent. According to our records, which are not necessarily complete, three cases have been so reported in the past six months I have not sufficient evidence at my disposal to justify a general conclusion about the effect on discipline.

Sir T. Moore

In view of that reply, and the reply made by the right hon. Lady the other day, could the Parlia- mentary Secretary say whether there is any connection between this decrease in corporal punishment and the increase in juvenile delinquency?

Mr. Freeman

Under the disciplinary code of the schools, can children be subjected to corporal punishment in front of the children, and does my hon. Friend approve or disapprove of that process?

Mr. Hardman

Quite frankly I feel that the use of corporal punishment shows a certain weakness in the teacher. As a teacher of experience I never wanted to inflict corporal punishment, except perhaps sometimes on Members on the benches opposite.

Mr. Oliver Stanley

Does the hon. Member think the Chancellor of the Exchequer would have been the same man had he not been subject to corporal punishment in his youth?