Monday, July 10, 2006

School to expell pupils who refuse to give fingerprints

A Berkshire 6th form student has written to LTKA (Leave Them Kids Alone an organisation against schools fingerprinting children) saying that their school is threatening to exclude any child who refuses to give their fingerprints.

LTKA seem to think that fingerprinting is being introduced in 20 primary schools in the UK every week and that the systems exist in 3500 primary schools across the country. Whereas I find that hard to believe, it is a matter of concern that it should be happening at all.

To get at why this might be happening you need to look at the agendas of the people making the decisions.

The companies selling the systems will be well versed in the messages that schools like to hear - it will save time, be more convenient etc.

Overworked headteachers, teachers, librarians and administrators see the system a way of avoiding the time consuming process of dealing with kids losing library cards and 'the dog ate it' kinds of problems.

Kids don't have a say and in primary schools would be too young to understand the implications anyway.

It looks like parents are also being kept out of the loop, so don't have a say either.

So a lot of money is being spent on systems to release a little school staff time and the security and privacy implications for the children involved are not factored into the equation.

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