Sunday, November 25, 2007

Biometrics enable Australian schools to monitor students "more closely"

In Australia, New South Wales, the children's biometric market is taking off. The all in one scheme monitors eating habits, movements around school and children's reading habits.

Rooty Hill High School has ordered 14 scanners, which are expected to be used to scan students as they enter the canteen, library and some classrooms.

The school's principal Christine Cawsey said it would allow the school to monitor the students more closely. [why?]

But president of the NSW Council for Civil Liberties Cameron Murphy said the scanning system was "intrusive" and suggested those using the system were branding students as lawbreakers.

"It's a clear breach of their privacy and it's treating school kids like they're criminals," Mr Murphy told The Daily Telegraph last night. "It's absolutely absurd.

"If the fingerprinting doesn't work, what's next? Putting ankle bracelets on students?"

Academy Attendance manufactures the electronic attendance systems, which are expected to be rolled out to at least half a dozen other schools next year.

The Federation of Parents and Citizens Associations said they were not consulted about the new technology.

"This is a step too far ... we would have liked to have expressed an opinion to ensure that all the checks and balances were there," federation president Di Giblin said.

1 comment:

Ben Jones said...

Numerous employers use biometrics, this system guarantees that students are in class and learning?

The Biometric System gives students far more control than having to parrot "Present" when their name is called.

At least you acknowledge it is a biometric reading and not a finger print reading and thus has no value beyond the system and cannot be an intrusion on civil liberties (but don’t tell the nutters, or they will need to find some other fear based argument against a simple and effective system that improves attendance and safety of students)