Despite the legal prohibition of corporal punishment in schools in South Africa since 1997, the use of corporal punishment in schools continues to be widespread.
Surveys allow us to capture experiences of physical violence at any point during a child's life, including those incidents that have not been reported to authorities.
Assault refers to a physical attack, beating or the threat of an attack. Many of these incidents are not reported to the police.
This form of assault involves the intention to cause serious physical harm to a child. The high number of reported cases is indicative of the extreme nature of violence faced by many children in South Africa.
Murder statistics are regarded as the most reliable crime statistics because the presence of a body makes them difficult to dispute or manipulate. But a number of child murders remain hidden, such as when deaths due to abuse are attributed to natural or accidental causes, or when infants are 'dumped' or abandoned after birth.