A Tennessee mom first gave her 12-year-old son’s school permission to use corporal punishment on him in October when he was acting out.
But now, she has regrets after the school paddled her son for a second time, according to WZTV.
Ashley Lauer said the middle school asked if they could use corporal punishment on her boy, Joey, again in November.
She agreed because her own methods of discipline at home weren’t working, she admitted:
“I agreed to it because nothing else was working at home. He wasn’t turning in his homework, he was doing it, but wasn’t turning it in. So I figured, well, let’s try that and see if that works, and then he came home with the marks.”
Lauer said that her son wasn’t hurt the first time he was paddled but returned home the second time with bruises and marks.
She said her boy was left in tears for days. Lauer told WZTV:
“I understand I agreed for him to get the corporal punishment. I didn’t think this would be the end result. And for him to be in tears and upset and not being able to sit comfortably on hard surfaces for days after, it was not necessary.”
The mother reported her son’s injuries to the Department of Children’s Services, but it was determined the principal followed proper protocol for the punishment.
According to Tennessee law, spanking, slapping, and other forms of physical punishment are legal as long as they’re “reasonable” and for a “good cause.”
Only punishments deemed “unreasonable or unnecessary” can be considered abusive.
Lauer is now warning parents after she said officials at Macon County Junior High School overstepped the boundaries:
“Just, I wouldn’t agree to it. Try and deal with it at home, otherwise you could end up with this result. I wish I would’ve said no and just tried another method.”
The school district said that corporal punishment is always used as a last resort.