I think poxyfairy meant the school did them a favor because she's in a much better school now.
I don't see the point of having dress codes if a) you're not going to enforce them uniformly (last year vs. this year); b) you're not going to enforce them with staff; c) you don't have a good reason for them, especially in light of what the school is ostensibly trying to accomplish.
Paddling is not uncommon in some private schools, especially religious ones. I refused to enroll my son in an otherwise good school because they had a paddling policy. I also grew up in the era of public school corporal punishment, and believe me, we behaved, but most of us were scared sh*tless of the teachers who spanked, shook, rapped knuckles with the ruler, etc. My second grade teacher was a tyrant. If the only way you can maintain order is to terrify your students, then you shouldn't be teaching. It sounds to me like that family is well shut of that school.
Former longhair, now CG, living in N. California where the fog meets the wind
3a/b, fine, normal porosity/elasticity, high density
Conditioner wash and style, sometimes with a dab of BRHG.