Dear Friends and lovers of hard work, creativity, innovation, teamwork and success,welcome to my corner “Naza’s Corner”! Before I continue, let me remind you that my name is “Chinazaekpere”, “God answers prayer”. I am a Junior Secondary School (JSS) student, living in Jos, the Plateau state capital. Considering, how important we are to each other, especially what we stand to gain, working together, as friends, I wish to introduce Comfort Ocheje, a student of Shekinah High School, Jos, a Kingdom minded, success driven student and goal getter into the forum. Please join me to welcome her. She has an article for us. Enjoy her piece entitled: PUNISHMENT OF STUDENTS BY TEACHERS

 Students face challenges in schools. The challenges include:

  • Delay in the Payment of school fees
  • Difficulty coping with their academics
  • Punishment by teachers and fellow students, etc.

My focus today is on punishment of Students by Teachers. According to the Oxford Dictionary, punishment means “To impose a penalty on someone”. Similarly, School is defined by the same Dictionary as “An educational institution”. The same Dictionary defines a Teacher as “A person who teaches people to acquire knowledge”.
For better understanding of this discussion, I wish to explain what I mean by punishment. It is severe punishment, torture, excessive lashing or flogging that most times results to injuries on the students.
In most secondary schools there’re high rate of torture. In such schools, teachers punish students because they did not know a particular subject, not because they committed any offense. In a particular school for example, a teacher flogged a student severely because he failed his subject. To me this is very wrong. Instead of inflicting that level of pain or torture on the student, the punishment would have been lighter, if the teacher must punish the student. I think, what the student needs is encouragement and support from the teacher. This is likely to make the student improve gradually.

Teachers should not punish students anyhow. This is because it discourages them from learning. Some teachers think that students can learn by force, but that is a lie. Students can only learn by gradual process. Teachers, who are fond of punishing students unnecessarily, should be identified and cautioned against such and if they are not ready to change, should be given the treatment they deserve. There is a saying ‘You can take a horse to the river but you cannot force it to drink’ (author unknown).
Teachers should allow students to learn without undue punishment. For me, punishment is not wrong but excess of it (torture) is bad and that is what I am against. My friend told me that in her school (boarding school), every Junior Secondary School (JSS 1) student is flogged heavily at admission into the school by fellow students (the seniors) and the Teachers are aware. According to her this is called welcome to JSS 1. Is this not torture?

I have seen cases where students leave school because of excessive punishment. Excessive punishment should be discouraged, so that students will learn freely without any fear. The claim by some teachers that they punish students because they have no other option should be looked into. There is always the alternative to things. The case of students and punishment meted to them should not be different.
Till next time, when I will be discussing in detail the punishment of Junior Students by their Seniors I wish to say good bye friends.

By: Comfort Ocheje

Student, Shekinah High School, Jos

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