School discipline is the system of rules, punishments and behavioral strategies appropriate to the regulation of children and the maintenance of order in schools. Its aim is to create a safe and conducive learning environment in the classroom.
School discipline has two main goals: (1) ensure the safety of staff and students, and (2) create an environment conducive to learning. Serious student misconduct involving violent or criminal behavior defeats these goals and often makes headlines in the process. However, the commonest discipline problems involve noncriminal student behavior (Moles 1989).
It is important to keep the ultimate goal in mind while working to improve school discipline. As education researcher Daniel Duke (1989) points out, "the goal of good behavior is necessary, but not sufficient to ensure academic growth." Effective school discipline strategies seek to encourage responsible behavior and to provide all students with a satisfying school experience as well as to discourage misconduct.
The word “discipline’ is derived from the Latin root “disciples” meaning a pupil or disciple. Naturally, the problem of discipline was taken to consist in bringing the conduct of the pupils into conformity with ideas and standards of the master. The pupil had to develop the virtue of docility and plasticity so that the teacher might impress his personality on them and mould them in his own image. This was the conception of the relationship between pupil and teacher everywhere. Its modern concept is very broad and inclusive one. It does not recognize difference between mental and moral behavior for the purpose of control, nor, in fact for any other purpose.
In fact, the individual mind is conceived of “as a function of social life-as not capable of operating by itself but as requiring continual stimulus from social agencies and finding its nutrition in social purpose”.
Modern view of discipline is to bring the same unity in the educative process and educative material as we find in real life. School must be a social organism in which social situations should be provided to stimulate and direct the impulses of the pupils in the pursuit of the common purposes through cooperative or shared activity. To obtain good result is also another view. Cooperation should improve the intellectual, moral, social and physical activities of the students in school environment and these must be directed towards the realization of the certain goals.
Purpose of the discipline is also develop the attitudes, habits, ideas, and code of conduct through the medium of the social life of the school which should be organized on a cooperative basis and inspired by higher ethical teaching of religion.
The purpose of discipline is to help the individual to acquire knowledge, habits, interests and ideals which conduce to the well being of himself, his fellows and society as a whole. It gives realization to the school that it must be reconstructed on the lines of the development and conscious pursuit of common ends in a cooperative spirit, each member contributing to the common good in accordance with special gifts. Life in the school thus organized becomes similar to the, and continuous with, life in democratic society, and discipline becomes co-extensive with the whole of school life.
· Discipline gives children a feeling of security by telling them what they may and may not do.
· It helps children to avoid from frequent feelings of guilt and shame for misbehavior-feelings that inevitably lead to unhappiness and poor adjustment.
· Discipline enables children to live according to standards approved by the social group and thus to win social approval.
· Through discipline, children learn to behave in a way that leads to praise that, they interpret as indications of love and acceptance which is essential to successful adjustment and happiness.
· Discipline serves as an ego-bolstering motivation, which encourages children to accomplish what is required of them.
· Discipline helps children to develop a conscious the “internalized voice” that guides them in making their own decisions and controlling their own behavior.