§ 49. Mr. Meadowcroft
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science when he will announce Government policy on corporal punishment in schools; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Chris Patten
In the Government's view, schools should be free to decide for themselves on the availability and use of corporal punishment. However, a ruling of the European Court of Human Rights requires us to secure respect for the philosophical convictions of parents who do not wish their children to be subject to this sanction and, following our decision last Session not to proceed with the Education (Corporal Punishment) Bill, we are considering the appropriate course of action to take.