The study evaluated secondary school teachers’ perception on the effectiveness of physical punishment as a disciplinary measure in selected secondary schools in Ile-Ife, Osun State. This was with a view of exploring the effects of physical punishment in encouraging or discouraging secondary school students from delinquent and violent acts.
The quantitative data for the study was collected from 230 teachers in 12 purposively selected secondary schools through simple random sampling technique. The quantitative data collected were analysed using descriptive and inferential statistics. The Qualitative data collected through In-depth Interviews and Focus Group Discussions (FGD) were analysed using the TextBase Beta. The study revealed that there was no significant relationship (F^sup -val^=.145, P≤0.05, X^sup 2-val^=.243, P≤0.05, and t^sup -val^=.135, P≤ 0.05 respectively) between teachers’ demographic attributes such as (age, level of education and sex) and their perception. It was also revealed that teacher’s length of service had no significant influence (X^sup 2-val^=.713, P ≤ 0.05) on their perception. Also, there was a significant relationship (r^sup -val^ .000, P ≤ 0.05) between teachers’ perception and frequent adoption of physical punishment. However, the Qualitative analysis showed the influence of religion on teachers’ perception, (King Solomon, in the Book of Proverbs [13:24] ), (Proverbs 22:15, KJV) and (Proverbs 23:13, 15, KJV). In conclusion, physical punishment was perceived as an effective disciplinary measure for correcting and maintaining discipline among secondary school students as well as, in molding and shaping their cognitive and psychosocial growth and developmental ability.
In Nigeria today, acts of delinquency and violence among secondary school students have become a major problem, which both the school system and the society at large are contending with. These problems appear in form of destruction of school and public properties, cheating in examinations, alcoholism, drug abuse and addiction, sexual offences, stealing, truancy, rudeness, fighting, bullying, verbal abuse, and defiance of constituted authorities, just to name a few. Consequently, effective disciplinary techniques are needed to curb such negative conducts and to maintain discipline in secondary schools. However, the major issue that parents and teachers should consider in relation to discipline is how the measures used can contribute to a high level of positive socialisation and character development in children.
The aim of all forms of discipline of children must be to develop good characters in the form of social conscience. The various disciplinary measures adopted by the schools are yet to achieve their aims. Often, secondary school students are involved in cases of violence and delinquencies, which are reported by the media. These disciplinary measures are deficient either because they are not appropriate or in the techniques of their application and administration. Therefore, this study involves an evaluation of the perception of secondary school teachers on the effectiveness of physical punishment as a disciplinary measure in selected secondary schools in Ile-Ife, Osun State.Counselling Implications
Statement of the Problem
There is no consensus of opinions about the effects of physical punishments on students. While a school of thought views it as harmful and negative, another sees it as corrective and positive. However, at various times different forms of physical punishment have been adopted in secondary schools as disciplinary measures and yet, the deserved ends are not usually achieved. Even the efforts of the families, the government and some stakeholders in the education industry towards controlling the negative and anti-social acts involved by secondary school students have not yielded positive results.