Algeria should enforce the prohibition against corporal punishment at schools in its education law, and revise its criminal code to explicitly ban the practice.

The Education Act states: "Corporal punishment, abuse and all forms of moral harassment is prohibited in schools. Violators of the provisions of this section are liable to administrative sanctions, without prejudice to prosecution."[1] Despite this prohibition, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child concluded in 2012 "that corporal punishment remains widely accepted in society and routinely used as a disciplinary measure in schools."[2] The criminal code does not explicitly penalize corporal punishment.

Algeria accepted recommendations to ban corporal punishment in all settings at the UN Universal Periodic Review in 2012, but merely noted similar recommendations at its subsequent review in 2017.[3]

Ministerial circulars remind schools that corporal punishment is prohibited, including in June 2018.[4] In 2019, the Minister of National Solidarity, Family and the Status of Women, Ghalia Eddalia, set up a working group to identify ways to end corporal punishment.[5]

News editorials have criticized the lack of governmental statistics on the prevalence of violent discipline by school staff against students.[6] According to the National Association of Parents of Students, there were an average of 10 complaints per day in 2015 by parents of violence by teachers against children.[7] However, in 2015, the education minister said that violent discipline occurred at schools only in a "minimal number" of "isolated cases."[8]

Violent discipline appears widespread in the home: a 2017 news article citing government data reported that 86 percent of children experienced domestic violence.[9] An official study published in 2019, based on 2012 national survey data, found 87 percent of children ages 2 to 5 years were exposed to violent discipline at home.[10] The survey found that 82 percent of children ages 5 to 15 experienced psychological (verbal) abuse, 68 percent moderate physical violence, and 29 percent "severe physical violence."[11]

[1] Education Act No. 0804 of 23 January 2008, article 21.

[2] UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, "Concluding Observations: Algeria," July 18, 2012, CRC/C/DZA/CO/3-4, paras. 43-44,

[3] Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children, p. 2,

[4] Gershoff, id. Eirick Prairat, "Voyage au coeur des pratiques punitives," Revue internationale d’éducation de Sèvres, September 2019,

[5] "ChatimentChâtiment corporel sur les enfants: Eddalia proneprône une approacheapproche pluridisciplinaire," AlgerieAlgérie Presse Service, September 30, 2019,

[6] Editorial, "Vidéo. Education nationale/ Les châtiments corporels ont toujours cours," AlgerieAlgérie Focus, October 19, 2015,

[7] El Watan, "La violence gagne du terrain à l’école : dix cas de châtiment par jour," March 26, 2015, (accessed July 21, 2019).

[8] Hebba Selim, "Violences d’enseignants: Comment le petit Raouf a cessecessé d’aimer son ecoleécole," HuffPostMaghreb,

[9] Hana Saada, "Children’s Day: 86% of Algerian children victims of domestic violence," DZ Breaking, June 1, 2017,

[10] UNICEF and the Algerian Conseil National Économique et Social, Bien-être des enfants et des jeunes, May 2019, p. 71, N-MODA: Bien-être des enfants et des jeunes.pdf 

[11] UNICEF and the Algerian Conseil National Économique et Social, Bien-être des enfants et des jeunes, May 2019, p. 87.