"“We have lent a huge amount of money to the U.S. Of course we are concerned about the safety of our assets. To be honest, I am definitely a little worried.” "

Chinese premier Wen Jiabao 12th March 2009

""We have a financial system that is run by private shareholders, managed by private institutions, and we'd like to do our best to preserve that system."

Timothy Geithner US Secretary of the Treasury, previously President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.1/3/2009

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Fingerprinting kids at school is OK - BECTA and ICO say so

"Becta leads the national drive to improve learning through technology. We do this by working with industry to ensure we have the right technology for education in place. We also support the education sector to make the best use of technology so that every learner in the UK is able to benefit from its advantages and achieves the best they can." Becta website

The chairman of Becta (British Educational Communications and Technology Agency) is Andrew Pindar CBE Between October 2000 and August 2004, Andrew was the UK's E-Envoy (WTF ?) , responsible directly to the Prime Minister for co-ordinating the development of the knowledge economy in the UK. During that period, (says the Becta website) " the UK moved to the top of world league tables for the use of digital technology," which is evidently bollocks as we survey the wreckage of publicly funded, outsourced IT systems for Government departments and agencies.

Another member is Stephen Gill, accountant, ex PriceWaterhouse Coopers who is CEO of Hewlett Packard UK.

Not gents who have any reluctance to extend the use of technology to monitor, all from womb to tomb, and indeed have a commercial interest to do so.

Becta have issued today a ten page document "Guidance on biometric technologies in schools" which they have developed with "support" from the Department for Children SChools and Families (DCSF) in "consultation" with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).

It is claimed this advice is primarily aimed at headteachers, governing bodies and anyone else who may be involved in the process of introducing biometric technology into schools.

The docuent providesthem with what Becta feel they need to know about biometric technology systems if they are thinking of introducing such a system in their school, and to advise them on what steps they need to take to introduce it successfully.

Adding as a paraphrasis and afterthought ... "Parents and carers may also wish to read the guidance, and the ICO’s view, to help them understand what biometric technology is, what it can be used for, and what their rights are under relevant legislation. "

There is a brief review of fingerprint recognition currently in use for "cashless catering" , "automated attendance and registration", "school library automation"

All schools must handle data about pupils under the terms of Data Protection Act 1998 and the Governing body of a maintained school (as distinct from a non-maintained) incorporated under section 19(1) of the Education Act 2002 has a power under paragraph 3(1) of Schedule 1 of that Act to

“do anything which appears to them to be necessary or expedient for the purposes of, or in conjunction with (a) the conduct of the school, or (b) the provision of facilities or services under section 27 [of that Act.]”

This general enabling power clearly covers such matters as the introduction of biometric technology systems for purposes such as improving the administrative efficiency of the school.

There is nothing explicit in the Data Protection Act to require schools to seek the consent of parents before implementing a biometric technology system. (it was n ot of course when the Act was passed) The Data Protection Act 1998 provides that personal data shall not be processed unless one of the conditions of processing detailed in Schedule 2 of the Act [http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1998/80029--n.htm#sch2] is met. Consent is one of these, but it is not required if any of the other conditions applies.

Regarding the age of a child, pupils are the data subjects of the personal data which is being collected and it is they who should in the first instance be informed about the use of their personal data. The Data Protection Act 1998 does not specify when a person is (or may be considered to be) too young to give consent. It is a matter of judgement that must be made on a case by case basis by the school as the data controller. Only where a pupil is judged to be unable to understand what is involved will his or her rights be exercisable by the parent or someone with parental responsibility for the pupil.

Whilst consent is not required for all processing of personal data, schools should normally involve pupils and parents in their decisions to use biometric technologies as is the case with other decisions made during the school life of children.

The ICO has also set out its view (23/7/07) on the use of biometric technology systems in schools. Its paper ‘The use of biometrics in schools’ can be accessed here and the ICO Press release here.

They conclude .." that in view of the sensitivity of taking children’s fingerprints, schools should respect the wishes of parents and pupils who object to their (or their children’s) fingerprints being taken in school. "

So if you don't want your child, grandchild or anyone elses's child fingerprinted you can, " ask the school to respect the wishes of parents and pupils" ... or tell them to fuck off.

Leave them Kids Alone is an excellent campaigning website if you want more information.

No comments:

(C) Very Seriously Disorganised Criminals 2002/3/4/5/6/7/8/9 - copy anything you wish