No less than 20 states allow corporal punishment - using physical force that
causes pain or discomfort - against a child with disabilities for purposes of
The ACLU/HRW report makes clear that students with disabilities are subject to
corporal punishment at significantly higher rates than their peers who don't
have disabilities. Florida ranks ninth in the nation on this list. Further, all
too often, kids with disabilities are being punished for having a disability -
for behavior that is a direct manifestation of their diagnosed and documented
condition. The report documents instances in which this happens to children with
autism and Tourette Syndrome. The report sums it up this way: "Students are
being beaten for behavior they simply cannot control, or cannot reasonably be
expected to control, a grossly disproportionate and fundamentally demeaning
response to the child's condition."
Let's stop the punishment now and make it clear that any use of physical force
for purposes of discipline against a child with disabilities (seclusion and
restraint is another topic for another day) will be promptly and forcefully
dealt with by our schools and elected officials. Stop corporal punishment in
school on students with disabilities.
Stop corporal punishment in school on students with disabilities.
Family Network on Disabilities was founded in 1985 by a group of parents of
persons with disabilities who came together for mutual support and
information-sharing. FND is a grassroots organization for persons with
disabilities and their families that is family-centered and family-driven.
Please continue to check back for additional information and ways that you can
advocate for persons with disabilities.