Wash. school district scanned students’ palms without parents’ prior consent
December 3, 2013
A school district in the state of Washington has stopped its use of biometric hand scanners at schools which uniquely identified each student after parents flooded a school board meeting last night to complain.
Similar to a retina scanner, the hand scanners introduced by the Puyallup, Wash. School District identified the unique vein patterns in each student’s palm in order to deduct the lunch price from that student’s pre-paid school lunch account.
“There has got to be other ways than scanning my kid to figure out who he is,” Tim Snyder, a father, said at last night’s school board meeting according to the News Tribune.
Snyder’s wife Jenna pointed out that if the school district transferred the students’ biometric information off-site, it still exists as data somewhere.
Another parent, Jonny Holmes, stressed the psychological concerns in addition to the blatant violation of privacy.
“I would prefer that my son be addressed by his name, not as a number and not a palm print,” he said to the board.
The News Tribune also reported that the parents learned about the hand scanners not from the school district but from news reports after their introduction.
The scanners were in use at Wildwood Elementary School for a week and Stahl Junior High School for a month.
This is not the first occurrence of a school district implementing invasive technologies which treat children like cattle.
Last year, the Northside Independent School District in San Antonio, Texas forced students at John Jay High School and Anson Jones Middle School to wear RFID chips which could track their locations both inside and outside the school properties.
The district said that the program would “increase revenues” and provide a “general purpose ‘smart’ ID card.”
One student, Andrea Hernandez, led the student opposition against the program, which the district eventually scrapped entirely.
Last month, we reported that a charter school in Oakland, Cali. was installing “gunshot detectors” inside classrooms which could monitor the schoolchildren in real-time.
These gunshot detectors, however, are likely better at recording conversations than actually detecting real gunshots.
With such Orwellian technologies, public schools are conditioning children for a lifetime of perpetual tracking and surveillance as federal entities begin deploying a domestic spy grid across America.