Feeds

MPs condemn school fingerprinting

After parents threaten action

The essential guide to IT transformation

Shadow ministers for the Libdems and Conservatives have condemned schools that fingerprint children.

Liberal Democrat shadow education secretary Sarah Teather and Conservative shadow minister for schools Nick Gibb spoke out on Teachers TV. The issue is coming to a head because parents are preparing a case against schools that have installed fingerprinting systems over the summer and started fingerprinting children without their parents' consent.

"They should not be doing this," Gibb said of fingerprinting schools. "They should find another method of identification for borrowing library books."

He said there were serious civil liberties issues about a government that amassed databases of people's fingerprints.

Teather told Teachers TV: "Fingerprinting three year olds to borrow library books is clearly excessive and completely over the top. There's a serious issue here. The government must get some legal advice."

A parent on the programme said her trust in the school had been destroyed after she learned it had taken her child's fingerprints without her permission: "They've taken part of her identity we didn't give permission for," she said.

Headteachers have rejected accusations that they are installing "big brother technology".

Janine Fletcher, a solicitor helping the campaign, said fingerprinting was in breach of the Children's Act, the Human Rights Act, and other laws.

She wants a judicial review to clarify what biometric information schools could take from children and for what purposes.

The Department for Education and Skills said it was "up to schools" what they did, but suggested they should get legal advice from their local authorities about whether they were in breach of the Human Rights Act before they fingerprinted pupils.

They should also inform parents, or get the consent of the child if the child is "mature" enough.

Teachers TV said the Tories had pledged to ban the fingerprinting of children if they were elected, but the Conservative party office said they were merely "not in favour" of children being fingerprinted. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Banking apps: Handy, can grab all your money... and RIDDLED with coding flaws
Yep, that one place you'd hoped you wouldn't find 'em
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
Primetime precrime? Minority Report TV series 'being developed'
I have to know. I have to find out what happened to my life
prev story

Whitepapers

A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.