Teachers: The Rod Is No Relic

"Spare the rod and spoil the child" may seem like a quaintly old-fashioned philosophy, but plenty of U.S. teachers still live by it. In a nationwide sampling of grade-school teachers by Grade Teacher magazine, nearly half of the 600 respondents said that they had hit at least one child during the last school year; 10% admitted, anonymously, that they had struck children more than five times. In addition, 70% reported that other teachers in their school had used physical punishment.

The survey also disclosed that about 75% of the schools polled still have policies that permit such punishment. Ten percent of...