When I was a kid, everyone who had any authority over us had the absolute right to spank us, from parents to teachers, and even babysitters. I found this out in most clear terms one night when I was about ten.
My parents went out for the evening and left my younger brother, my stepsister and me in the supervision of Patty, who lived next door. Patty also brought over her younger sister Allison, who was our age and played with us all the time. Patty was 16 and really nice to us and we usually had lot of fun when she watched us – but this night was not one of those times.