Are Fingerprint Scanners Really Necessary On School Buses?

The Washington County school system in Florida believes it has come up with the best way to take attendance. Ditching the typical roll call, the school system will use fingerprint scanners that log everyone as they step off the bus.

The school system already uses scanners inside the school, but their location makes its difficult to keep track of every student. Soon, the school will begin installing the scanners on select buses. If this initial trial goes as well as expected, the scanners will be installed on the school's entire fleet of vehicles. School officials hope this system will improve attendance.

But you have to wonder, are school officials opening a Pandora's box filed with privacy issues and money concerns? Each scanner is pricey, costing the school district a hefty $30 per student per year. The scanner also captures your fingerprint which is a unique, identifiable piece of information, stores it in a database, and links it to a name.

Yes, parents can opt-out and request their children be tallied the traditional way. But still, it seems kinda Orwellian that the school wants you to flash your fingerprint before you can learn your reading, writing and arithmetic. [WJHG via PopSci]