• Ghana Education Service has banned caning in all schools in the country.
  • The GES argued that corporal punishment inflicts physical pain on children.
  • Teachers are expected to use alternative forms of sanctions when they need to punish a student.

The Ghana Education Service (GES) has banned any form of corporal punishment in primary and secondary schools all over Ghana.

In a statement issued by the Deputy Director General of GES, Anthony Boateng, said teachers are expected to use alternative sanctions as measures for correcting students in schools.

“This is in view of the Positive Discipline Toolkit containing positive and constructive alternatives to correcting children was developed in 2016 as a component of the Safe Schools Resource Pack.”

The statement added that “apart from the physical pain corporal punishment inflicts on children, this approach also causes significant emotional damage. Some of the lasting effects of this method of disciplining school children include physical scars, emotional scars (trauma, fear, timidity etc.) and violent behaviour.”

Steps suggested in the toolkit to address student behaviour include setting class rules with students, encouraging them to be of good behaviour, getting students to recite statements periodically to confirm their adherence to standards of behaviour set for the classroom.

They also include explaining to the child why a particular behaviour he or she has exhibited is unacceptable.

The toolkit also recommended punishments such as withdrawal of responsibility or removal from a leadership position, cleaning, changing of seating position, assignment of extra tasks and writing of lines, eg. A full book of “I will never talk in class again.”