An excellent article by AlterNet lists the ‘creepy technology’ used in American schools. Maybe this is what the UK schools market has in store for our children.
SAN ANTONIO COPYING HOUSTON SCHOOL DISTRICT USING RFID –
San Antonio is taking its cue [tracking kids with RFID] from the Houston, TX, school district. It began using RFID chips to monitor students on 13 campuses in 2004. Houston’s Spring Independent School District gave 28,000 students RFID badges to record when they get on and off school buses. The police and school administrators provided the badges to ostensibly prevent truancy and child abductions.
GPS TRACKING FOR DELINQUENT KIDS – In Anaheim (CA), about 75 seventh- and eighth-graders from Dale and South Junior High Schools are taking part in the pilot program. Students with four or more unexcused absences have “volunteered” to carry a handheld GPS device. Participation in the program will enable the students to avoid being prosecuted and a potential stay in juvenile hall.
Each school day, the delinquent students get an automated “wake-up” phone call reminding them that they need to get to school on time. In addition, five times a day they are required to enter a code that tracks their locations: as they leave for school, when they arrive at school, at lunchtime, when they leave school and at 8pm.
GPS LOCATOR IN BACKPACKS –
The Palos Heights School District in Illinois is attaching GPS locators to students’ backpacks in order to “locate kids in seconds” both in and out of school. The electronic reader registers date, time and location of kids. Administrators justify the tracking and surveillance of students outside of the classroom as for their safety.
“SCHOOLS SPY ON FAT KIDS” –
A very different monitoring effort is underway on Long Island, NY, in an effort to fight obesity. Selected Bay Shore students designated overweight or obese are being equipped with a wristwatch-like devices that count heartbeats, detect motion and even track students’ sleeping habits. Similar programs are underway in schools in St. Louis, MO, and South Orange, NJ.
RFID IN BASKETBALL JERSEYS – In 2010, the Contra Costa County School District received a $50,000 grant to put RFID tags into basketball jerseys that students are supposed to wear while at school. The bulk of the grant went toward setting up sensors around the school to read the tags and computer systems to actually monitor where each student is. The program tracks preschool children.
The above comes from the excellent article in AlterNet, link at the top of this post.
Here in the UK biometric technology and privacy issues have recently been considered fully with the recent Protection of Freedoms Act passed in May 2012 detailing parental consent required when schools process a childs biometrics. As of September 2013 schools in the UK using biometric systems need written parental consent for the child to participate in the system. The school cannot discriminate against the child if they choose not to use biometrics and an alternative method must be found.
In a school of say 1500 pupils, the job of writing to both parents and obtaining written consent from one parent, for all students using a biometric system may prove cumbersome.
Perhaps the alternative GSP or RFID may be considered here in the UK.
Both RFID and GPS technologies are void in UK schools here at the moment.
This excellent video by We Are Change TCH – “Protest RFID Round 2 at NISD School Board SA, TX” posted September 29th 2012
Hopefully the NISD school board will see sense with so much opposition, 17 people wanted to speak against RFID tagging of children, only 5 were allowed to speak.
“Beginning this year, the NISD School Board has decided to take on a pilot program for two schools John Jay High School and Jones Middle School of San Antonio, Texas, that will branch out to 110 more schools after the pilot, utilizing the RFID Tag on a Lanyard. If you thought the barcode around a kids neck was a horrible idea, like I did, this takes it to a whole new level. We’ll touch on the health issues in a moment, but here’s some numbers to throw at you: It cost $525,000 to set up this new program for two schools, all the tags, and for the monitoring set-up. It will cost $136,000 a year, per school to run and maintain. This at a time when John Jay HS is having teachers print textbooks on copy machines, classes are lacking chairs, as well as some teachers only pulling in 11k a year! Not to mention all the other things teachers provide out of their own pocket, the teacher lay-offs, pay-cuts and the maintenance needs of the schools. Once you figure in the other 110 schools, that’s $38,800,000 start up cost, a $15,232,000 to maintain yearly, and this money is allocated for education. Education for whom? Someone’s learning a lot about your kids.
The Hernandez Family is spearheading the fight against RFID Tags, and Andrea Hernandez has taken her stand on the school grounds, refusing this indoctrination, by not wearing “the mark” Which also makes her marked. Andrea was gathering signatures on a petition for a moratorium on the RFID Tags after school, and was harassed by NISD lackeys to hand over the documents claiming she could not do so on school grounds, and forced her to leave the property or face arrest by the schools’ Black Boots, also frothing around her. Back in this writer’s day, we had student councils, we liked to fight issues at school, and it is our right to petition the school with grievances! Apparently that’s not the case anymore according to Andrea, now it seem’s the school keeps their cattle in line from the top down by putting pressure on people with academical threats, and persuasion through incentives. Andrea was even told by the Superintendent, that her failure to participate in the pilot program might get her transferred to another school, kicked out, fined or other forms of removal. On one account, she spoke of her being given the option to wear the old/new plastic bar code if she would come out in favor of the new RFID system and that they would “give her back her rights”, seeing the hypocrisy of the suggestion, and the insult to her humanity, she declined. What are they teaching your kids with that methodology? Think of the dog training method. They can’t buy or check out books, can’t buy tickets to events without it!? Teachers giving candy, to high school students for wearing the tracker, and scolding them by not giving candy to those that don’t wear it! How likely will that generation, or the next, when adults, be willing to take RFID in the body so they won’t forget it for work, or a license, bank account, and all the like that have been put out as reasons to get a CHIP implanted?
Today was the second round of NISD Board meetings. Support of the family had grown, and with 17 people signing up to speak before the board, measures were taken to shave down the opposition. The only news coverage was channel 4 WOAI, and INFOWARS Nightly News. The Chair Person contrived to allow only 5 people to speak on the RFID issue, and a three minute allowance for each peasant to speak. Others had signed up to speak on a separate issue, the budget, and were given time to speak but they angered the chair when they used part of their time to address the RFID issue as wasteful spending. The chair barked and warned of any outburst will cause the meeting to adjourn. Five speakers addressed the Board, bringing up valid facts and points on the issue, ranging from religious, privacy and medical affects. More coverage on the events in the board meeting to come.”
Article – Biometrics and RFID tracking in UK Education
Documenting the rise of biometric and RFID technology used in education
Book – Surveillance Schools
With the growth of surveillance technologies globally, Dr Emmeline Taylor focuses on the phenomenon of the Surveillance School and explores the impact that continual monitoring is having upon school children, education and society.
433MHz military capabilities of tracking students
Interview with Katherine Albrecht, technology and privacy in schools
Katherine Albrecht show - July 2013. Katherine and Pippa King discuss the victories in removing or preventing biometric and other tracking systems from being used on our children.
Interview: Biometrics & RFID in schools, 433Mhz
Interview with Pippa King by Tony Gosling from BCFM - August 2013