Violence Against Children: the Practice of Corporal Punishment in Primary Schools of Myanmar

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Thwin Pa Pa
May Than Nwe
Pyone Mon Aye


All forms of violence against children are becoming a national issue in Myanmar, framed in terms of violations of children’s rights. Corporal punishment is a common form of violence experienced by pupils at all ages, although it is most often found in primary schools. Based on the international provisions on the rights of the child, the new 2019 Children Rights Law prohibits corporal punishment. Despite this, corporal punishment and other forms of violence are still widespread in Myanmar. This can be explained by the existence of strong socio-cultural factors, attitudes and beliefs which consider physical punishment a normal part of a child’s education, both within the family and at school. The article builds on fieldwork carried out in Mandalay, including interviews with teachers and other school professionals, parents, and government officials. The article documents the reality of corporal punishment in schools from the point of view of the school professionals and parents. It analyses the main issues at stake in relation to the international and domestic human rights frameworks on the protection of children against all forms of violence. The findings of this study contribute to a better understanding of corporal punishment in schools, and proposes a focus on various initiatives to secure a safe learning environment for children, such as a code of conduct and ethical rules for teachers, and training in human rights and child protection as well as in alternative classroom management.

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Thwin Pa Pa, May Than Nwe, & Pyone Mon Aye. (2021). Violence Against Children: the Practice of Corporal Punishment in Primary Schools of Myanmar. Journal of Human Rights and Peace Studies, 7, 30–50. Retrieved from
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