Your school probably had some kind of system in place to keep track of students leaving class to go to the bathroom, or go on an errands for staff. Whether it was hall monitors, head boys and girls, or prefects, it's likely that your system involved human trackers. However, if the school board in Canaan, Connecticut, give a Westport security company the go ahead, hall passes could be a thing of the past. Instead, schools in the area would use RFID chips embedded in ID cards to keep track of students during school hours.
The RFID technology would also allow the school to monitor students movements in the event of a fire, as well as keep a close eye on visitors to the premises. There's also talk of possibly using the technology to track who is using which district school buses to make budgeting easier, as well as using the chips to track school equipment. Superintendent of Schools Dr. David Abbey said that students would participate in the program voluntarily and would also require parental consent.
The idea was broached by a security company called SecureRF Corporation. The company approached the schools as part of its research to investigate the uses of RF technology in commercial practices and schools. The NC advertiser cites Founder and Chief Executive Officer Louis Parks who says his company is looking to make a partner out of the school board.
"We are looking to test this technology with a partner," Parks told the school board on Monday. "The primary role we are looking for from [the school board] is the feedback and input."
Though the board is intrigued by the idea, officials say they won't sign off on anything until they hear more about the program and have all the information.
"The board hasn’t approved anything other than participating in discussions and exploration of a grant that may or may not have application to our school district but that has some exciting features that may work," Abbey said.
Board member Amy Rochlin echoed his thoughts on the project, expressing her interest but highlighting the need for more information on how it would work.
"From what I am hearing I am interested in exploring it more," she said, "…but as a board we need to know what they are signing off on."