Parents Upset Over Lunchtime Palm Scanner
$300,000 system leads to privacy concerns.
Parents of students at Carroll County schools in Baltimore say a new policy that scans kids’ palms to pay for their lunches goes too far.
With the PalmSecure system, students hover their hands over an infrared scanner that ID’s them by the unique patterns in their skin and registers a sale, according to a report from the Daily Herald.
The Herald talked to Mike Richmond, who has two children at a Westminster elementary school. He said the scanning started before parents were given the chance to opt out.
"I didn’t appreciate how they handled it. I’m concerned about it. I know it’s the way of the future, but it’s fingerprinting, it’s palm-printing."
The district said the goal is to decrease the time it takes to pay for lunches since the children have a limited amount of time to eat their meals.
The controversial system is operating in three Carroll County elementary schools with plans to expand to the whole district within a year. It’s also used in many other schools around the country where there have also been concerns about invasion of privacy as well as the cost of the system. Once implemented, PalmSecure will run the Carroll County district about $300,000.
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Photo: Barbara Haddock Taylor/Baltimore Sun/MCT via Getty Images
One reason why America's school systems are failing, we are afraid of trying out new things. Why are we so afraid of change? It is a harmless palm scanner, the only problem I can see with it is germ contamination. However, the school should of had an opt out form before the shift to new technology. Send out the form ASAP and delete all records until forms are returned.
Oh, get over it . Only criminals are paranoid about their prints being in a gov't registry.
I think it's a great way to keep track of lunch charges. No ID tags to loose, no misunderstanding a childs name in a noisy lunchroom...
For three years now we have been getting robo calls from the school trying to collect for lunches our child did not buy!
Their system: "We try to remember the childs name or ask". Both highly unreliable.
We even showed proof that our daughter was absent one day she was charged. Made no difference, they still try to collect.
I'm sure the system is used for more than just lunch charges. Like attendance, knowing where the child is at all times, etc. Ever tried to pick up your child from school and they can't find her? Not a good feeling!
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