Written by a cyber friend who shares my interest in school paddlings.
My mother indeed served as an assistant principal for a few years in the late Seventies, the first woman to do so in her district. However, that was a neighboring district to where my sister and I attended school so thankfully she was never our teacher, and only served as an administrator a bit later in any case. We had the "if you get paddled at school, you will get paddled at home" rule but only had to deal with her on one side of the equation - the idea of having to take a paddling from her also at school would have been too embarrassing to contemplate, honestly.
As for the school supply store, I remember that place well - it was a sort of warehouse-sized building just outside of Pittsburgh that teachers from several districts all over two counties frequented. In those days, and we are talking about the Fifties and Sixties really, there weren't more specialized shops for that kind of thing, just one-stop shopping at this giant barn of a place, including a rather nondescript table of identical white oak school paddles. The one we had at home came from there, and without too much exaggeration, it probably proved a fairly cost-effective sort of purchase, as it got used with a certain regularity for years. Today neither my sister or I will say a bad word about that paddle and its place in our upbringing, but of course at the time we absolutely hated it. Of course today I would be very happy to have it for other selfish reasons, but it served its purpose.
At my high school the usual tariff on misbehavior was five whacks, either first thing in the morning in the principal's office (both boys and girls) or out in the hallway grabbing your ankles (generally just the boys). The big exceptions were gym class and (apparently) shop class, where different concerns about safety, organization and just plain imposing any kind of order on a bunch of unruly and ornery teenagers meant that the teachers tended to take matters into their own hands more. I had the same woman for gym class all three years and she took the paddle to several gals in each one of them. Unfortunately, I was one of them. That was actually the only paddling I got in high school, although I had a few in the earlier grades. Back then that was common, practically everyone got it at some point or other, and you kind of just took it for granted. However, not everybody had the same kind of school paddle sitting on a bookshelf in the living room!
In my day it was also chinos or dress slacks for the guys, and skirts of dresses for the young ladies, no jeans allowed until my junior year.
As to taking licks of the same intensity now on bare skin, I would say the same - it is amazing how much I actually relish a good sting now, or the way the paddle builds up the heat back there like nobody's business. Go figure.
I quite like certain aspects of wooden paddles - they do have certain unique qualities. In some ways there really is nothing else in the world like bending over, lowering your jeans and biting your lip knowing that in about thirty seconds someone is going to apply a custom-made polished wooden board to your fanny with enough force to bring about a sharp intake of breath, an incredible burning sting and an acute blushing of the affected area. And then realizing that you're now going to repeat that step several times in succession. That is as awe-inspiring to me as an adult looking for kicks as it was a teenager getting my attitude adjustment. It just plain works.