Alvarado officials say parents like paddling option




Posted on September 26, 2012 at 11:32 AM

Updated Wednesday, Sep 26 at 12:14 PM

ALVARADO -- Corporal punishment has long been administered at the Alvarado Independent School District.

Superintendent Dr. Chester Juroska has been with the district for 13 years.

"The critics are the loudest," Juroska said. "You don't hear supporters speak about it."

Last year alone, nearly 100 students got paddled.

"There were probably 80 students who received corporal punishment several times," Juroska said.

In Alvarado ISD, corporal punishment is administered at the junior, intermediate, and high school levels, but not at the elementary schools.

"We're not so gung-ho that we have to have corporal punishment, but it's the parents who support it and want it," Juroska explained.

Colton Cornell is a Senior at Alvarado High School. He knows all too well what it's like to be paddled.

"It does hurt pretty bad," he said. "The big, old wooden paddle."

Cornell almost lost track of how many times he got paddled last year. He said being the class clown has consequences.

"Paddling is a good option, because the way it works here you have two options: You can have a suspension, or take three pops and you're done with it like that," Cornell said.

In Alvarado ISD, corporal punishment can only be carried out by a person of the same gender and with both parent and student approval. School leaders say the paddlings are usually for minor infractions, like being tardy.

News 8's Cynthia Izaguirre asked Alvarado High School Principal Chris Magee to show her his paddle.

"Here it is," he said. "Not very thick. No holes [for air to pass through.]"

Magee said they make sure the licks are effective, and then send the student back to the classroom.

Cornell said he hasn't had one paddling this year, because he's learned from past times. Not only is it painful, but it's embarrassing.

"You walk into class and everyone's like, 'You just got popped!'" Cornell said. "But the sting goes away and you're fine."

Juroska said if parents ever want corporal punishment to go away, it will. But that doesn't seem to be happening anytime soon.