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If using violence to solve problems is never acceptable, then it should certainly never be permissible to hit children in the name of discipline.

8th January, 2012
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Corporal punishment in schools was banned in 1982. Photo: Alamy

They looked exactly like any one of the other families squeezed into the booths at the busy restaurant, enjoying a weekend lunch of posh burgers and rosemary-salted fries.

The father - handsome, immaculately dressed and in his mid-40s - folded his newspaper on the seat beside him and smiled at the waiter as he ordered a bottle of Italian beer to go with his food. His two lively, young daughters chatted and squabbled half-heartedly over...

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