Legislation to put an end to corporal punishment in Kentucky's public schools, would have little effect locally.
House Bill 22 would prohibit any school district employee or non-faculty coach from using corporal punishment - including but not limited to striking, spanking, paddling or shaking - to discipline public school students.
However, Lyon County Schools Superintendent Russ Tilford said the local district has already eliminated corporal punishment prior to his installation as head of the school system six years ago.
Bill sponsor Rep. Steve Riley, R-Glasgow, who is a retired state educator, said experience has taught him that corporal punishment "is not an effective form of discipline. The purpose of discipline in schools and other places is to change behavior in a positive way, and research shows (corporal punishment) does not do that."
If the legislation that now rests with the Senate after being approved Friday by a 65-17 vote in the House is passed, none of Kentucky's 172 school districts could utilize corporal punishment.
Currently, fewer than 20 still use the form of punishment.
According to a database from Kentucky Youth Advocates, there have been no reported uses of corporal punishment in Lyon County schools dating to 1999-2000, the earliest year for the records.
Statewide, corporal punishment is down from 5,328 incidents 20 years ago to just 284 in the last full academic year.
House Education Committee Chair Regina Huff, R-Williamsburg, who voted for the measure, said alternative punishment is just as effective.
The former special education teacher said schools have less traumatic forms of discipline at their disposal when needed.
Rep. Chris Freeland, R-Benton, voted for the measure.