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Texas School District Proposal To Track Students With Radio Frequency Identification System Sparks Controversy

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If a high schooler in San Antonio skips school for a burger at Bob's Big Boy, Big Brother just may be watching.

The city's Northside Independent School District is making waves with its plan to track students using Radio Frequency Identification System tags, reports Daily Tech.

In total, over 6,200 students at John Jay High School and Anson Jones Middle School could be tracked through ID cards that they carry to enhance safety, school officials say. The gambit could also bring in much-needed revenue since higher attendance figures will result in more state funding totaling $1.7 million.

Some parents in the district expressed privacy concerns over the proposal.

“I would hope teachers can help motivate students to be in their seats instead of the district having to do this,” Margaret Luna, whose eighth-grade granddaughter at Jones will go to Jay next year, told the San Antonio Express-News. “But I guess this is what happens when you don't have enough money.”

When a similar program was proposed at a school system in Northern California in 2005, it was quickly withdrawn by school officials amid outrage in the community and the opposition of the American Civil Liberties Union.

ACLU Texas's policy strategist, Matthew Simpson, tells The Huffington Post that the group has privacy and safety concerns about the proposal but have not yet contacted the school district.

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