13 September 2012

Tracking Children in School

Students in one Texas school will soon be required to wear lanyards with active GPS tracking chips.  Schools want to use the technology to be sure students are in school, or to be able to locate them quickly in an emergency.  Some parents and students are concerned about their privacy as the chips cannot be turned "off" during non-school hours.

I don't see why everyone has to get all legal about it on both sides.  An extra five minutes at the beginning and end of the school day would give the students an opportunity to lock their IDs into their lockers.  I don't see why a tracking technology cannot be used while the child is on school grounds and the school is charged with keeping that child safe.  I also don't see why there can't be an opt-out for the relatively few parents who are very concerned.

Why does everything have to be a huge fight?  I can see both sides of that issue, but since there are no cameras attached, how is it a privacy concern during school hours?  The school had best dang well know whether my child is in the classroom or on the playground.

Would you support the idea of your child wearing the ID?  I wouldn't care so much if it stayed at school.  But spending this sort of money may just be a bad idea financially.  I know our district spent BOODLES on a big ol' security system; you have to buzz the front office to enter the building, they check your photo ID at the door and all that sort of thing.  Aaand at the same time, they're overcrowded so they popped a bunch of trailers behind the school, the back doors to the building are propped open all day, and anyone wanting to kidnap/ kill/ molest kids could just wander off to the back and have himself a field day.  Brilliant.

4 comments:

  1. I see your point. I think for me, the thing that made me take notice of this was the reasoning that they need these trackers to keep track of the kids while they are at school. It kind of implies they had no idea what was going on before this idea. I was all, "can't they just use their EYES to see where the kids are?"

    And anyway, if you read to the bottom of the article, the trackers will cost a couple hundred thousand, but the school will get $2 million from the state if they implement the program. It's all about the money.

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  2. My niece, in college, had to pay $50 for some clicker gadget that she clicked when she walked in one teachers classroom and also clicked when she wanted to answer a question. No click... you got dinged for lack of attendance and/or class participation.

    That means that there is a technology that exists that the kids can control...

    On the other hand, I feel this is kind of like the check-out aisles at the supermarket. There used to be a time when there were 10 cashiers and 1 self check out aisle (if any at all). Now there is 1 cashier and 10 self check out aisles... JOB ELIMINATION TACTIC... No more homeroom teachers.

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  3. I don't like this tracker idea at all. A teacher should be able to keep track of his/her class while they are in there surely? And if the school yard is completely fenced with a patrolling teacher or three, they should all be accounted for there too. Do a head count when the kids get back inside.
    Trackers!! Pffft!!

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  4. I hate the idea. It's not okay and it is an invasion of privacy--just like the school that hauled a kid into the principal's office because they had the power to turn on the cameras on the laptops they sent home with a kid. While spying, they saw the kid do something wrong in the privacy of the kid's bedroom. Exactly where do they think their authority ends?

    All that said, how hard can it be to simply leave the lanyard in an empty classroom and walk out an unattended door? (You'd think I knew something about cutting school . . .) Seriously? Whoever came up with this idea hasn't been a teenager for a very long time.

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Non-troll comments always welcome! :)