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Poor children in rural areas of the South are more likely to be paddled in school than other students, a new study has found.

According to a report on corporal punishment issued by Children magazine, black students are more likely to be paddled than white students because a disproportionate number of them are poor. But poor white children in these areas receive harsh punishment at the same rates, the study found.

Because courts have backed the right of educators to paddle students, the report says, "corporal punishment may be the only officially sanctioned form of child abuse in the United States."

It notes that only nine states and Puerto Rico have laws that prohibit corporal punishment. Most large urban and suburban districts also ban it, according to the study.

In related research, two papers presented6at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association last month conclude that children who are excessively punished in school suffer from higher levels of stress.

To obtain a free copy of the "Report Card on Corporal Punishment in America's Schools," write Children, 33 East Minor St., Emmaus, Pa. 18098.


Dropout-prevention programs are less effective for girls than boys because they are frequently based on false sex stereotypes, concludes a study on the impact of the education-reform movement on female students and professionals.

The study, completed by the Project on Equal Education Rights of the National Organization for Women's Legal Defense and Education Fund, found that girls, like boys, most frequently leave school because they are "alienated." Yet, the study says, most dropout-prevention programs assume that girls leave school because they are pregnant.

Copies of "The Heart of Excellence: Equal Opportunities and Educational Reform," can be ordered for $6.95 each from peer, 1333 H Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20005.


The American Home Economics Association has compiled descriptions of 103 pregnancy-prevention and parenting programs offered in home-economics curricula.

The group's report, "Teen Choices: Books, Babies or Babies and Books," appears in the fall issue of the association's flagship publication, The Journal of Home Economics. More detailed information on the study may be obtained by writing Joyce Kohl, Research Unit, American Home Economics Association, 2010 Massachusetts Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20038.


School districts should provide both monetary and nonmonetary incentives to teachers to make the profession more attractive, a new report by the National School Boards Association contends.

The 48-page monograph, "RewardingExcellence," suggests that, in addition to general pay increases, districts consider adopting such incentives as merit pay, year-end bonuses, and expanded fringe benefits. The report reviews the research on incentive programs, describes existing programs, and provides data on teacher salaries and fringe benefits by state.


The gap in academic achievement between black and white students has narrowed since the introduction of school and college competency testing in Louisiana and North Carolina, according to a new study. But blacks continue to be underrepresented in college-preparatory classes, programs for the gifted, and college enrollments, the study by the Southern Education Foundation concludes.

Copies of "School and College Competency Testing Programs: Perceptions and Effects on the Black Students in Louisiana and North Carolina" can be ordered at a cost of $5 from the foundation, 340 West Peachtree St., N.W., Suite 250, Atlanta, Ga. 30308; telephone: (404)523-0001.

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