ID Chips to Track Students at School?

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
ID Chips to Track Students at School?
21
Thu, 10-11-2012 - 12:10pm

The Student Locator Project, which launched on Oct 1. at a San Antonio high school and middle school and could be extended to as many as 112 schools, tracks student whereabouts using embedded RFID (radio-frequency identification) chips on student ID badges.

PC World reports:

"Unlike passive chips that transmit data only when scanned by a reader, these chips have batteries and broadcast a constant signal so they can track students' exact locations on school property, down to where they're sitting -- whether it's at a desk, in a counselor's office, or on the toilet."

http://living.msn.com/family-parenting/school-uses-id-chips-to-track-student-locations-1

 

I think I'd have a fit if one of my children were required to wear such a thing.  It just seems way over the top (not to mention a huge waste of money, imo).   What do you think about it?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2009
Mon, 10-15-2012 - 12:57pm

Our system is not that expensive when it comes down to it. Most of our schools do not have the bells and whistles I have heard of in some of the American schools. We have equality of school board funding. The schools in the more well-off areas are not better funded than the schools in the poorer areas since the province adjusts the funding the boards receive to balance everything.

Over a decade ago, the province redrew the school board boundaries, to improve on efficiency and reduce costs. Money has been saved by standardizing the curriculum and the books used. New high schools are built to the same plans. Schools share programs; start times are staggered to reduce busing costs; expensive special needs programs are offered in only some of the schools. We have alternative high schools; kids in urban areas walk to school. High school kids take city transportation, if they opt to go to their non-local school (which are all within walking distance for students in their catchment area).

The schools are also semestered, divided in two 4 months. Kids take 4 full courses each term which reduces class sizes and maximizes learning. The curriculum is streamlined concentrating on the basics. I think the largest high school here has about 2000 students and that is because it goes from Grade 7 to Grade 12.

We are not perfect, far from it. We are having problems in our First Nation communities and in parts of Toronto and Montreal. But I would rather see money spent on targeted programs. What we are doing here, which could be reason the high school dropout rate has fallen significantly over the last decade or two, is that we have mandated small class sizes in the primary years when kids start to fail, fully funded 4 and 5 year old kindergarten to catch at-risk students. We also have a program here called Pathways to Education (slashed the dropout rate to 10% in one high-risk Toronto high school), which is an intensive cultural-based tutoring program plus the catchment areas of our schools cross economic boundaries. At risk students do better if they are not warehoused together.

There is a reason why these kids dropout of high school.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2003
Mon, 10-15-2012 - 8:55am

I am not positive what kind of locks are on the school doors. I am assuming they are outside/in locks. It just seems every year I hear of some child that literally walks past the office, the nurses office, the adjustment counselors office and out the front door.

I think part of the problem is children have more freedom then they use to. When I went to school, lol, many years ago, a child rarely walked the halls alone. We took trips, to the bathroom, as a class. If we needed to see the nurse, a teacher walked us down or the office was called and alerted we were coming. Now, the children are all over the place. Actually, when we were chosen to walk to the office to deliver something for the teacher, it was considered an honor. A sign we were mature enough to handle it. :smileyhappy:

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Mon, 10-15-2012 - 1:43am
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2003
Sun, 10-14-2012 - 7:28pm

I agree, you can't make a child stay at school.

Just an interesting point, I had one of those children that they just couldn't keep at school. He's doing wonderfully in college, but hated high school. When a child is found to be missing, the entire school goes on on lock down. Staff members then have to search the school to make sure the child isn't there. This is time consuming and takes aware from their regular duties. And then, if the child has left the premises, the school can be held accountable for this should harm some to the child.

I've heard of even elementary aged children leaving school grounds, but it's not a huge problem here. In a community where truancy is a big problem, this might be a good solution.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2009
Sun, 10-14-2012 - 2:44pm
Perhaps you need to take a page from our book. According to the latest stats, we have slashed our drop out rate in the last 20 years. The province with the highest dropout rate (20 to 24 year olds without a high school diploma) is Quebec and that is only 11%. Ontario is at 7.8%. We do it without tracking kids. Build more schools so you have smaller high schools, steam line & standardize your curriculum across each state and the country, provide more funding and not less for schools at risk, provide sex education starting at a young age (we start in grade 1 with age appropriate material) etc.. We are not prefect; we are still working on it. But I don't think tracking kids like cattle will help. You may force kids to sit in class but graduate, I doubt it.
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-27-2001
Sat, 10-13-2012 - 2:34pm

I think as long as there are certain parameters it is appropriate.  The students should not be required - or even encouraged - to wear such badges outside of school hours.  While on school time, the school is 100% responsible for the children's safety.  If they wander off-campus, if they're cutting class, if they're smoking or having sex in some back closet, it's the school's job to make sure they know where they are.

Also, schools in my state have frequent safety drills including fire drills, evacuation drills, bomb scare drills, active shooter drills, and lockdowns.  This technology would be enormously helpful in the case of a real emergency to insure that every child was accounted for.  

Outside of school?  Absolutely not.  It should be disabled and not travel with the child, who is now their parent's responsibility, and what they do is none of the school's business.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2003
Sat, 10-13-2012 - 9:53am

I don't see a problem with it, especially if truancy is a problem.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-18-2006
Fri, 10-12-2012 - 4:41pm

<<<That's a good point, but it's a different issue. In the case of kids with special needs, it's a helpful tool to protect them. In the case of typical kids, it's a way of finding who needs to be punished.>>>

I agree - I don't think it's appropriate for typical kids, and think that all that money could be much better spent elsewhere.

Angie

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2009
Fri, 10-12-2012 - 12:01pm
"""The district says the program is necessary to improve safety and track the number of students who attend the schools, which reportedly have high truancy rates. MySanAntonio.com reports the pilot program will cost about $525,000 and another $136,000 a year to operate.""" Gee, maybe they should use that money to improve their educational programs ( introduce more relevant programs,)to combat truancy.
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2009
Fri, 10-12-2012 - 11:46am
For special needs children, for which safety is a concern, I could see the benefits. But for the average child, it is treating students like commodities, not like people.

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