Money Will Movitate The Digital Tracking Of Schoolchildren

There’s money to be made in the cattle-style tracking of kids with RFID-chip IDs, and so the practice may become widespread, Wired writes:

Two schools at the Northside Independent School District in San Antonio began issuing the RFID-chip-laden student-body cards when classes began last Monday. Like most state-financed schools, their budgets are tied to average daily attendance. If a student is not in his seat during morning roll call, the district doesn’t receive daily funding for that pupil. But with the RFID tracking, students not at their desk but tracked on campus are counted as being in school that day, and the district receives its daily allotment for that student.

There appears to be dozens of companies who…offer their RFID wares to monitor students in what is still a tiny but growing market. Among the biggest companies in the market: AT&T.

About two dozen health and privacy advocates who signed an August position paper blasting the use of RFID chips in schools. The paper, which included signatures from the American Civil Liberties Union, Electronic Frontier Foundation and, among others, Big Brother Watch, said the RFID systems may have “potential” (.pdf) health risks, too.

“RFID systems emit electromagnetic radiation, and there are lingering questions about whether human health might be affected in environments where the reading devices are pervasive,” the paper said. “This concern and the dehumanizing effects of ubiquitous surveillance may place additional stress on students, parents, and teachers.”

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  • emperorreagan

    Man.  I never would have made it through school if they required ID tags when I was a kid.  I spent enough time in the principle’s office as it was.  Give me something they said was important to “lose” and I probably would’ve doused them with lighter fluid and burned them until my parents had to home school me. 

    • Jin The Ninja

      i would have just left it in the locker i never used- and still skipped to my heart’s content.

      • Matt Staggs

        No kidding. There are those among us who see usurping needless bureaucracy as a challenge rather than a barrier. 

        • Calypso_1

          basic training for miscreants

          • Anarchy Pony

            I only started in my senior year, so I’m not as skilled as some of my peers.

          • Calypso_1

            Late bloomers tend to display some of the more interesting skill sets.
             

      • Calypso_1

        I would have found some way to blackmail an admin into giving me a pass to leave.

        • Jin The Ninja

          only white people could get away with that:P
          but i like your thinking!

          • Calypso_1

            Nonsense my boy, I often cavorted with persons of various ethnic persuasions in carrying out such hijinx. It all depends on the Mark.
             

          • Jin The Ninja

            i said it more in jest than anything, so i don’t really consider it “nonsense.”

            however, there is a dynamic of power between student and teacher that intersects with the dynamic of power inherent in social interactions based on race.

            for instance, when i lived in asia (singapore and hong kong), i, was in fact, far more able to get away with bullshit being eurasian. as eurasian was the privileged position. however when i attended school in canada and the US, the position of privilege was completely subverted to a subordinated one.

            i can’t speak to your experiences, but i can speak to the asian-american experience and to my experiences.

          • Calypso_1

            You are aware by now my own leanings towards jest? And I your commitment to staying within the bounds of your experience & knowledge. : )

          • Jin The Ninja

            my knowledge is rather more broad than what i’ve ever written on disinfo, but since my real life work is within the context of critical theory and race, i do tend to respond to those issues, many times less intellectually and more emotionally than i would in any another context.

          • Matt Staggs

            Oh, I don’t know about that. I’ve met some pretty damned crafty people of all types. Seems to me that people oppressed by a system have a high motivation to subvert it. I’ve seen that plenty here in Mississippi. I find it quite admirable. 

          • Jin The Ninja

            i think i am the most subversive person i know. i played horrendous pranks on several teachers. i got into a chalk throwing match w/ a french teacher whom was rude as hell. all the while wearing my neatly pressed uniform in the middle of a classroom full of shocked and bit awed prep school kids. not that my example is particularly subversive, but i will go ‘balls to the wall,’ when i need to. always been a bit of a fighter. but the difference is what we can get away with. a person of colour could not, in my opinion, legitimately blackmail a white teacher in authority. of course i can be that fiery loudmouth ethnic and get suspended for a day, but i couldn’t attempt to usurp their power through nefarious means. it doesn’t mean other pocs cannot, but the consequences/reaction is totally different for white folk- particularly and especially in a high school setting.

          • Calypso_1

            You assume the teachers were white.  I went to schools where more than half the students and teachers were black. 
            One thing I’ll say for the South – despite the stereotypes of racism (and yes it’s there, like it is everywhere), in many areas we (some of us) actually live and work amongst each other with a familiarity and comfort that outsiders might not expect.

          • Jin The Ninja

            i really wasn’t making an assumption. i was speaking from MY experiences in high school where 99% of my teachers in 3 different countries at 5 different schools were white.

          • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

            lol…I just remembered telling the vice principal who threatened me with expulsion for fighting (he also asst coached the football team…whose members were the guys I was fighting with…sometimes two and three at a time)…and I told him point blank that he had a conflict of interest…was protecting his herd of sociopaths, and that if he didn’t slap a leash on them…it was his own fault if I put a few of them into hospital care, so if he wanted to protect his team from harm…he needed to rein them in and make them behave like they weren’t two bit thugs. The look on his face was priceless. I still got suspended for three days…but the team was awfully quiet when I came back ;-)

          • Jin The Ninja

            gives a very literal (and personally my favourite) meaning to “bash back.” ;)

            i’ve always found administrators, particularly vice principals, to be one of the biggest impediments to having a safe learning environment.

  • Tchoutoye

    That picture with the quasi-stylish posing, blatantly ripped off from Apple’s iPod campaign, is obnoxious.

  • Anarchy Pony

    The profit motive, always motivating the best kinds of things.

  • Nunzio X

    When I was a kid and we did something “wrong” we’d hear this bizarre bullshit:

    “That’s going on your PERMANENT RECORD!”

    It was bizarre because in those days, there was no such thing as a “permanent record.”

    Fast forward a few decades, and voila!

    • MadHierophant

      The best part is that they’ve tricked a great deal of us into writing it ourselves. 

    • Apathesis

       I really despise all the bullshit lies parents and teachers have told us over the years.

    • Matt Staggs

      Hey Nunzio, one day I got curious enough to call and request “my record” only to find that there wasn’t one at all. Turns out there was never one to begin with. Also: there is no spoon.

  • DeepCough

    Go ahead, do it: you are only inspiring an entire generation of kids to become super tech-savvy computer hackers.

    (Or maybe, just maybe, that’s the plan all along……..)

  • Apathesis

    I absolutely hate the fucking future.

    • Calypso_1

      c h a n g e i t

      • Apathesis

         I try to warn people on a daily basis about what is going on and what could be, but they don’t care.  They’re busy shoving their iPhones in their faces so they can find more drama on Facebook to talk about.  My parents are even worse; they think I am crazy when I bring up stuff like this and try to change the subject.  A lot of old folks don’t seem to care what kind of world they are leaving for their children.

        I’m a cynical bastard who doesn’t have much hope for the future, but I have not given up trying to discuss the things that are going on this earth with the people I know.

        • Calypso_1

          Telling people is one way. What skills do you have?

          • Matt Staggs

            You know, like nunchuku skills, bow hunting skills, computer hacking skills… 

          • Apathesis

            I have some nunchuck skills.

          • Apathesis

            Not many.  My only real talent is writing and playing music.

  • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

    We are the Borg.
    Lower your shields and surrender your ships.
    We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own.
    Your culture will adapt to service us.
    Resistance is futile.

  • JaceD

    This is so sad… During my final year at college (high school) we had an exchange student from the US, solid guy. He always had depressing stories to tell about the US educational system and his time enduring it.

    • Jin The Ninja

      i really like this new maori avatar, very cool.

      • JaceD

        Thanks =) it’s a flag inspired by the idea of becoming a republic with design aspects taken from the Maori flag of independence. The other half of the flag is of the Southern Cross constellation.
        Not the most popular design for a lot of people here, as the black, red and white colour scheme are often associated with Maori rebellion and violence.

        • Jin The Ninja

          i like it even more now that you’ve explained it.
          here, each aboriginal nation and many times individual bands have their own flag. but i’ve always been especially partial to the metis flag (in no small part because of my background) as it is very much a symbol of resistance, particularly when in red, and if you’re interested in indigenous resistance, some of the most interesting canadian examples come from metis people – louis riel, gabriel dumont, james p brady, malcolm norris just to name a few. it’s not popular here either to know the history fully, or to be critical of canada as a colonial nation, but i’ve always fully committed myself to the idea of sovereignty and post-colonialism. i like that the colours also remind me of a variety of anarchist flags;)

          • JaceD

            I can’t say I know much about the native people of Canada, which is a bit ridiculous as I’ve always been curious as to what became of them… I probably didn’t look as I assumed they went the way of the native Americans in central America, but I’ll be very interested to learn about them.
            The Maori situation is a fickle and confusing thing. Instead of fighting for an absolute integration with NZ society, they fight for separation, which I’m totally against… Not to say all Maori want a separate state, but a lot of us are regressive and direct our anger at the wrong people- people of European decent, rather than the crown and government which doesn’t do enough to create positive prospects to young Maori who often live in poverty, that’s not to say they can’t lift themselves out and make a difference in their lives… but it does boil down to education. (A pet hate for me is Maori who are on the unemployment benefit by choice, and they raise a fist at the government demanding their rights, while in the other  hand accept the governments money ((not that I have an issue with people living on the benefit, I just don’t believe they have a leg to stand on when it comes to fighting the crown and state)).
            At the moment there is a big legal dispute about Maori ownership of the water, in a fight against assist sales, which I’m for and against. I’m against asset sales, but also against any form of ownership of water. Maori ownership of ancestral land is one thing, but fresh water? Hell no… There are a lot of issues Maori fight for, which I’m against, hence the flag I use as my avatar and the flag I wave in protests- To me it symbolises the Maori spirit in me, while also acknowledging that the country is made from the blood of many different countries and cultures, and a need for us to unite against the enemies of all the people here; the Crown, a Government which doesn’t represent all people and foreign entities eyeing up our land to full their own purses.

          • JaceD

            I apologise for my rant… It’s a subject I’m passionate about and one that has turned violent on more than one occasion =p

          • JaceD

            I apologise for my rant… It’s a subject I’m passionate about and one that has turned violent on more than one occasion =p

          • Jin The Ninja

            i completely understand! i am very interested in indigenous rights issues and metis identity. I do not know very much about maori people, so i am inclined to listen to your perspective, rather than interject my own.

            i actually have a rather long response for you, but i’ll wait until i have more time to properly write it.

          • Jin The Ninja

            i completely understand! i am very interested in indigenous rights issues and metis identity. I do not know very much about maori people, so i am inclined to listen to your perspective, rather than interject my own.

            i actually have a rather long response for you, but i’ll wait until i have more time to properly write it.

          • JaceD

            I look forward to reading it!

          • JaceD

            I look forward to reading it!