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Over 1,600 instances of corporal punishment in New York schools

Will Waldron
Albany Times Union

State investigators have substantiated more than 1,600 instances of corporal punishment in New York schools over the last five years, The Times Union in Albany reported Sunday.

A substantial number of the complaints were in New York City public schools, the newspaper reported.

Other incidents included a substitute teacher in Watertown who was fired and arrested for grabbing a student by the throat and forcing him against a wall and a teaching assistant in Syracuse who was transferred and retrained for spanking a non-verbal student.

Corporal punishment is generally banned and can be classified as child abuse.

In all, the state Education Department documented nearly 18,000 complaints of corporal punishment in public and charter schools from 2016 through 2021, the Times Union reported.

The newspaper said it found that school districts have underreported cases of corporal punishment to the federal government and that state Education Department records are not readily available to the public.

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