Opinions differ over corporal punishment

The government is looking to re-introduce corporal punishment as a measure to curb the number of school–related violence in the country. The plan was revealed by the Minister of Education, Sports and Culture, Loau Keneti Sio, during an interview with the Samoa Observer on Sunday. Minister Loau said discipline and ‘tough Samoan love’ has always worked and he does not see why it shouldn’t work again. What do you think? Should we bring back corporal punishment? Talimalie Uta asked people in today’s Street Talk and this is what they said:

Maika Aloi, 48 Vaiusu

I think it depends on the government and what they believe is applicable in taking care of our country.

In my own opinion, if parents have very strong connections and bonds with their children, then that’s all we need. The reason why teenagers are causing trouble in town is because it’s their very own decision. Either they are showing off or maybe they have mental issues. I strongly disagree with bringing back of corporal punishment because as a father I believe that verbal discipline is much stronger than physical abuse.


George Alaivaa, 24 Motootua

Yes. I believe that it is a must for our government to bring back corporal punishment because we need a desperate solution. Children these days don’t often finish school because they have the freedom to do whatever they want to do. There is no sense of fear towards their parents because they are getting used to hearing the same words over and over again. 


Maifea Utaalepoto, 35, Tufulele

I disagree with it. We cannot change laws that have already been made. If corporal punishment was banned years ago, we should carry on with this law. I believe that fighting between schools fall back to families and how they discipline their kids. This issue is happening more often because parents are either not playing their part or kids themselves are too arrogant to even notice the importance of life.


Fereti Ala, 17, Falefa

To me personally, we should bring back corporal punishment because fighting between schools is not a new thing. Teachers have played their part in controlling their behavior but still, no changes. Therefore in order to stop this type of behavior, corporal punishment should be allowed back in schools. And it’s the only easy way to get rid of such behavior. Even the parents no matter how hard they try to discipline their children verbally, they will never listen.


Salote Akenese, 18, Falefa

The answer is simple, use corporal punishment because it is an easier and more effective way for parents to allow their kids to adapt to what they know are right in life. Verbal scolding is a waste of time because some kids will only listen today and forget tomorrow. I know that we kids have equal rights but nowadays, kids have taken advange of their rights. They do whatever they want in public, they have no sense of responsibility and they don’t care about their parents. Therefore, it’s a must to bring back corporal punishment.


Mapu Masoe, 48, Faleasiu

It’s about time. Kids nowadays no longer care or have the respect towards their teachers and parents. They have taken the law of no corporal punishment as a way of doing whatever they want freely. I believe, in Samoa children should not have any rights because they are under their parent’s control, unlike children in New Zealand and overseas. They may be under their parent’s supervision but the government is providing profit and money for them. Therefore, it would be a very wise decision to allow corporal punishment but not in a very harsh way, kids should be punished according to the kind of behavior they show.


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