A Perth paediatrician has proposed students should be docked demerit points on their graduation certificate for bad behaviour in school.
Murdoch doctor Elizabeth Green said schools should consider implementing a demerit system, similar to that used for drivers, giving students a "social score" that could be recorded on their WA Certificate of Education.
"Each high school student could be allocated 10 points for socially appropriate behaviour with point deductions for social misdemeanours such as online offences which can be monitored by Federal and State police," she said.
Dr Green said even though recording a social score on graduation which could affect students' employability might seem "draconian", so was the "emotional and psychological abuse" of teachers and students.
"I think we've got to have a consequence," she said. "Even if there was a three-year window and you had to earn those points back."
She believed that a five-day suspension meted out recently to six State school students who on Facebook threatened a teacher with rape and murder was too light.
_The West Australian _also revealed last week a Catholic school asked a Year 9 student to leave after "vulgar and racist" posts appeared on a Facebook page he had set up.
Dr Green, who has been practising for about 14 years, said such Facebook attacks were part of a "social shift" towards more selfish behaviour which she had noticed in her patients over the past three years.
She said that schools had to accept the role of social disciplinarian and help teach students emotional resilience in their early years because parents were increasingly unsure how to raise children.
Catholic Education Office director Ron Dullard said though demerit points were a good idea, they should be kept "in-house".
"It shouldn't be something that accompanies them for the rest of their lives," he said.An Education Department spokeswoman said the fundamental principle of giving or taking away privileges linked to student behaviour, such as a "good standing" status, had long been implemented in schools.
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