November 16, 2006 | By Hugh D'Andrade

First RFIDs, Now Fingerprints Used to Track Students in Schools

Despite complaints from privacy advocates and parents, schools in states across the country are considering using fingerprint scans to track students. Kids at Sandlapper Elementary in Columbia, South Carolina have their fingerprints scanned to pay for their breakfast and check out library books, while officials at the Hope Elementary School District in Santa Barbara, CA have just announced similar plans to use finger scans to charge students for their lunches. You can read more about these programs here and here.

This is only part of an unsettling trend: schools increasingly using various technologies to track students. For instance, as part of a test program, a school district in California forced students to wear school ID cards with privacy-leaking RFID chips. Thankfully, the district stopped the program -- schools and parents shouldn't trade student's privacy for a little bit of convenience. You can learn more here about RFIDs here.


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