Thursday, February 08, 2007

Government to "issue" guidelines via the BECTA website

Labour's Education Department are going to 'issue' guidelines via the British Educational Communications and Technology Agency's website (BECTA) at the end of March 2007 about the use of biometric technology in schools.

No guidance is going direct to teachers, parents or governors, but just placed on a NGO's website - not even a government run site.

No consultation or attempt to hear concerns or issues surrounding this technology is being sought other than the Information Commissioners Office.

A very disappointing show from Labours Education Dept and the DfES, but I have to say not a surprise.

Detail here by the BBC.

N.B. - Just a quick point to note, that in recent media a number of 3500 schools is being banded about (approx. 700,000 children) that are using this technology. This figure is from one manufacturer of a library system and is from from this article in the Daily Mail and is over 6 months old. The market has expanded quite considerably since then with over 15+ companies offering biometirics to schools. No one knows to what extent this is in our education system, these out of date figures are sadly all we have to go on.

So 6 months on I'm presuming the figure now is probably well over 1 million children with their biometric data on schools computors.

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