School discipline guidelines
The Ministry of Education and Training in an effort to promote safe, non-violent and protective enabling environment in Eswatini schools, has taken a stand to abolish all forms of corporal punishment in the school setting.
The Ministry of Education and Training in an effort to promote safe, non-violent and protective enabling environment in Eswatini schools, has taken a stand to abolish all forms of corporal punishment in the school setting. The Ministry is replacing it with Positive Discipline (PD). The Ministry has therefore developed these guidelines to hand hold schools towards implementing the ethos of positive discipline.
These Guidelines provide a clear guide to schools on alternative, positive methods of disciplining learners. It outlines the principles of positive discipline and how to respond to inappropriate behaviour with regards to the different levels of misbehaviour and consequences. Corporal punishment models violence, aggressiveness, hostility, fear and revenge. This disrupts the process of child development and against the standards of the teaching profession. It also has negative long term effects if not addressed appropriately. PD aims at allowing the child to learn self-discipline and respect for others without fear and enable them to take responsibility for making good decisions and understand why these decisions are in their best interest. The introduction of PD in schools is informed by the fact that the Kingdom of Eswatini, is a signatory to the Conventions on the Rights of the Child (CRC), and therefore has to put in place administrative measures upholding the rights of a child as per Article 19 (1). The guidelines aligns to the National Legislative measures in place, which are the Children’s Protection and Welfare Act 2012 and Sexual
Offences and Domestic Violence Act 2018 amongst others. The Study on the Drivers of Violence against Children shows that violent discipline including physical punishment and psychological aggression is the most prevalent form of violence against children, constituting 88%. MoET reports also reveal that a number of learners sustain serious injuries and some are fatal, in the hands of teachers while administering corporal punishment. It is against this backdrop
that the Ministry has developed the guidelines for implementing PD.