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Since teachers must act as a responsible parent does, society has to give them certain powers to exercise control or discharge the ‘duty of care’ which the law requires. The governors must approve forms of punishment, in particular, in a school. This is to avoid, for example, children being kept in detention after school if this meant that they would miss their bus home to a remote rural area, or to a dangerous part of a city. Punishments are in fact governed by the law, which decrees that they must be ‘reasonable’, defined by one judge as:

• moderate • not dictated by bad motives • such as is usual in the school • such as the parent of the child might expect it to receive if it had done