A sad story about school children

Channaka Udaya Kumara Amarasinghe, President of the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA), says that the abolition of corporal punishment in Sri Lanka is problematic due to the attitudes of children, parents and teachers.

“The main issue is that a child who complains of physical harm faces various difficulties. Teachers can isolate the child if they complain or take legal action against the corporal punishment teacher. A child who complains may not be able to attend the school he or she attended at the time of the injury. Besides, the general attitude of parents and society as a whole is that corporal punishment does no harm to a child. There was a time when even the parents of a child who suffered corporal punishment protested the suspension of a teacher who abused a child.” He said.

Meanwhile, the Stop Child Cruelty Trust (SCCT) says that the number of child abuse/physical abuse cases reported to the NCPA has tripled in the last ten years.

SCCT, citing the NCPA, said that in 2017, 80% of students were subjected to corporal punishment in at least one school term, 53% to physical abuse and 72.5% to psychological aggression.