Sunday, October 21, 2007
Are You Being Watched?
England is all a flutter these days about a new technology that's being considered for use in the country's secondary schools.
Seems microchips are being embedded into school uniforms so that students can be tracked--their every movement monitored by school computers. Take one step off campus and alarm bells will go off. Teachers will even be alerted if a student just seems LIKELY to misbehave. Right now the system is still being tested, but one day it could be a reality for millions of kids. (Read more here.)
In the US, some schools are taking equally controversial steps that include fingerprinting students and imposing dress codes so strict that you can be punished for wearing a Winnie the Pooh sweatshirt.
Unfortunately, in both Britain and the US, school kids don't have the same rights as adults. A doctrine called "in loco parentis" allows educational facilities to assume the responsibilities of parents during school hours. That means while you're in school, the Constitution (which ensures the right to free speech, among other things) does not protect YOU.
Somehow that doesn't seem quite fair.