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News Link • Education: Government Schools

School Plans To Tag Students With Microchip Bracelets To Encourage 'Good Behaviour'

•, Steve Watson

In a move that sounds like something out of a frightening dystopian fiction, a school in New Zealand has come under intense criticism from parents for attempting to introduce a scheme to tag children with microchips in order to promote good behaviour.

Fairfax Media reports that Swannanoa School in North Canterbury plans to attach chipped bracelets to students to track their behaviour. Many parents were not notified of the scheme, only finding out about it via minutes from a Parent Teacher Association meeting.

When the local media investigated the proposal, the school finally sent out notifications to parents. A letter from the principal suggested that the plan was more efficient than alternatives such as ID cards, which could be misplaced.

The school has even gone as far as measuring up the wrists of children in preparation for the plan, which it says will cost $7000 to set up.

Under the proposal, the devices locked to kids' arms would allow teachers to use portable scanners in order to add reward points to a student's good behaviour record, stored on a database. Students would be rewarded points when they did something teachers determined to be positive, and incentives would be enhanced with the promise of prizes for reaching a certain amount of points.

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