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Texas School District uses GPS to Track Students

Posted in News on September 14th, 2012
Smart ID Technology used to Track Students

Courtesy of FoxNews.com

Texas School District uses Cutting-Edge Technology to Track their Most Valuable Assets-their Students

Beginning in the middle of October, two San Antonio schools will begin a controversial pilot program costing the district $261,000. In an attempt to increase school attendance, John Jay High School and Anson Jones Middle School will require their students to wear ID cards that utilize radio frequency identification, giving them the ability to track the students on school grounds.

Similar to the way Track What Matters monitors and manages their clients assets, these two San Antonio schools will physically track their 4,200 students via ID cards, which will be worn on lanyards around each student’s neck.┬áThe new “smart” student identification cards will allow administrators to report attendance more efficiently, keep a watchful eye on all of their assets-the students, and most importantly protect these students in the event of an emergency.

Northside Independent School District spokesman Pascual Gonzalez told FoxNews.com, “It is like GPS in the school. As administrators, we are charged with the safety of students in our schools. So within the four walls of Jay High School and Jones Middle School during the school day, we will always know where those kids are.”

To ease privacy concerns, school administrators have been adamant that this technology will be used purely to report on student absences, and to better manage students in the event of an emergency. John Jay High School administrators sent a carefully written letter to parents assuring them that there would be no personal information embedded into the IDs, and that they would only be active on school grounds.

The letter reads, “We are looking at technology as a means for increasing the safety and security of our students at Jay. The district will be piloting software that will help us immediately locate students while they are in the school building.”

Each ID card will have the ability to transmit location information via microchip to electronic readers throughout the campuses. If student’s miss roll call, this technology allows administrators to locate the student, and if they are on campus, they can get them to class, and report them present.

With technology paving the way we interact in this new-age world, these two San Antonio schools are one step ahead of its competition–other districts. As school districts are constantly looking for new ways to generate school funds, this new project has administrators very hopeful that they return on investment will be waiting for them just around the bend.

What do you think of this use of technology? Do you think if we track students it will increase safety and security?

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