A concern within the majority of classroom settings has always been making the best use of time available. However, the efficient usage of time isn’t always possible with young children, teenagers or even in university settings.
One of the most prominent arguments supporting biometrics in schools and universities is the more efficient usage of time and an increase in efficiency. The students’ fingerprints, palms, or even irises can be used for a variety of administrative and day-to-day tasks that normally eat up valuable school time. Little by little, roll calls are being replaced by biometric scans before entering the classroom, library cards are being replaced by fingerprint scans and payments for school meals will no longer require cards or cash, just the students’ unique biometric data.
In countries such as India, with systems such as the Aadhaar (the largest biometric database), biometric identification methods are being used for educational purposes such as school enrollment, scholarship applications and exams. In addition to a unique identification number, iris scans and fingerprints are also used to help identify those enrolled in the database.
Some also argue that the key benefit of biometrics in schools is for attendance taking and ultimately the safety of the students. With school entrance and exit times, parents can assure that their student made it to school alright and also know when their child has left to ensure that they are where they are supposed to be. Furthermore, biometric recognition systems can be used to identify potentially dangerous individuals such as disgruntled past students or employees, ex criminals or sex offenders.
Biometrics in schools has proven to be a popular topic to debate as more schools are beginning to adopt it, technology continues to advance, and school and university safety is an increasing concern. Faced with various data protection laws and the fact that the biometric data of individuals under the age of 18 is in questions, it isn’t a topic that governments are taking lightly.