Education Policy

Factsheet on Texas House Bill 772 to End Corporal Punishment

It’s Time to End Corporal Punishment in Texas Schools

Vote Yes on House Bill 772, Dr. Allen’s Bill To Prohibit Corporal Punishment in Texas’ Public Schools

See PDF version of this factsheet

HB 772 prohibits corporal punishment in Texas’ public schools by school employees, volunteers and independent contractors.

Corporal punishment is defined as hitting, spanking, paddling or deliberately inflicting physical pain by any means on the whole or any part of a student’s body as a penalty or punishment for the student’s behavior.

HB 772 does not impact parents’ discipline decisions off campus.

HB 772 does not change current law around the reasonable use of restraints in schools.

Yes! Corporal Punishment Still Happens in Texas  Schools and it Hurts Students!

Texas school districts with corporal punishments incidents

Though corporal punishment has been prohibited in Texas’ foster care system and in Texas Juvenile Justice Department settings, children can still be hit in Texas public schools. See IDRA’s interactive map showing where corporal punishment is used in Texas.

Research shows that hitting students in school is harmful in every way. . .

  • It hurts students’ academic success.
  • It causes physical harm.
  • It creates negative school climates where children may not feel welcomed and supported.
  • It hurts students’ mental health and well-being.
  • It ignores underlying issues students may have that lead to challenging behavior.
  • It is not an effective discipline tool and can be counterproductive.
  • It damages the relationships between students and teachers that are critical to school safety.
  • It models violent behavior to children instead of healthy conflict resolution.
  • It disproportionately impacts children with disabilities and Black children in Texas.

In Texas schools, in 2017-18…

  • 468 school districts reported having corporal punishment policies.
  • 13,054 public school students were hit in their schools, 372 of these students were in preschool
  • Texas students were hit 21,685 times in their schools

No child should be hit in school!

Hitting children does not help teachers to address students’ needs or manage their classrooms. Instead, we must focus on evidence-based strategies to support students and teachers and ensure school safety.

Experts agree hitting children in schools is harmful and ineffective…

Witnesses registering in support of HB 772

  • Autism Society of Texas
  • Bexar County Education Coalition
  • Buckner International
  • Coalition of Texans with Disabilities
  • Disability Rights Texas
  • IDRA
  • Mental Health America of Greater Houston
  • Mexican American School Boards Association
  • NAMI Texas
  • National Association of Social Workers – Texas Chapter
  • Texans Care for Children
  • Texas American Federation of Teachers
  • Texas Appleseed
  • Texas Association of School Psychologists
  • Texas CASA
  • Texas Center for Justice and Equity
  • Texas Network of Youth Services (TNOYS)
  • Texas Pediatric Society
  • Texas PTA
  • Texas State Teachers Association

Many other organizations have endorsed legislation to eliminate corporal punishment in schools across the country

  • American Federation of Teachers
  • American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children
  • American Psychological Association
  • American Psychological Association Division 31
  • Attachment Parenting International
  • Autistic Self Advocacy Network
  • Brain Injury Association of America
  • Center for Disability Rights
  • Center for Health and Health Care in Schools
  • Center for Learner Equity
  • Children’s Defense Fund
  • Committee for Children
  • Council for Exceptional Children
  • Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates
  • Crimes Against Children Research Center
  • Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund
  • Empowering Pacific Islander Communities
  • First Focus on Children
  • Florida Psychological Association
  • Futures Without Violence
  • Georgia Psychological Association
  • Girls Inc.
  • IDRA
  • Kentucky Psychological Association
  • Legal Aid Justice Center
  • Lives in the Balance
  • Maine Psychological Association
  • Michigan Psychological Association
  • Minnesota Psychological Association
  • National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities
  • National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners
  • National Association of School Psychologists
  • National Disability Rights Network
  • National Down Syndrome Congress
  • National Education Association
  • National Federation of Families
  • National Initiative to End Corporal Punishment
  • National Network to End Domestic Violence
  • National Parents Union
  • National Prevention Science Coalition to Improve Lives
  • National Women’s Law Center
  • New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children
  • Nollie Jenkins Family Center, Inc.
  • Prevent Child Abuse America
  • Society for Child and Family Policy & Practice (Division 37, APA)
  • Society of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology (Division 53, APA)
  • Society of Pediatric Psychology (Division 54, APR)
  • Southeast Asia Resource Action Center
  • Southern Echo Inc.
  • Southern Education Foundation
  • SPLC Action Fund
  • Texas Appleseed
  • The Daniel Initiative
  • The Dignity in Schools Campaign
  • The Education Trust
  • The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
  • The Up Institute
  • S. Alliance to End the Hitting of Children

For more information about corporal punishment in Texas schools, contact IDRA’s Chief Legal Analyst Paige Duggins-Clay, J.D., ( See IDRA’s issue brief Hitting Hurts – The Case for Ending Corporal Punishment in Texas.