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School Discipline

A Memorial Caning

My school years were from 1943 to 1953 when SCP was the rule rather than the exception. The build-up to my first caning was largely due to me having slight ADHA -Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder. Something not generally recognized in the 1940s and 1950s I had been generally disruptive and disobedient in my Primary school class and was unresponsive to discipline from my lady teacher.
My headmaster in agreement with my parents arranged for me to go to a child behavioral assessment center where I can well remember fully enjoying myself playing with all sorts of puzzles etc.
The result of my assessment was that although I was intelligent I was strong-headed and just in need of firm guidance and discipline.
The headmaster and my parents were in agreement to comply with the advice that a much stronger discipline approach was necessary.

My primary school was built in the apex of a side street of a main road and at the tip of the apex there was and still is a 12 ft. high war memorial consisting of a cross standing on terraces.
The single worst wrong a child could do was to climb and play on this memorial.
One day when I was seen climbing up laughing on the memorial my headmaster who had served in the First World War was very annoyed indeed.
I was taken to the headmaster study by my long-suffering lady teacher who stayed in the study throughout my caning.
My long-term memory is perfect and I can recall the following events.
The headmaster told me that I was to receive a severe caning.
The head removed a typewriter from his desk and then put it on a bookcase.
The head then went to a glassed door wall cabinet and removed a long yellow
I was not tall so he put a thick telephone directory on the floor in front of his desk and told me to stand on the book.
I remember the cane lightly tapping my bare bottom before each stroke
I only received four slowly paced-out strokes but the severe pain was something that I had never experienced before.
I felt that I had been unfairly treated because I had only climbed up the war memorial to retrieve my scarf that had been thrown up by one of my friends but given my previous classroom behavior I can fully understand my teacher being pleased to watch my caning.

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