Maryland school district halts implementation of biometric palm scanners


Carroll County Public Schools in Maryland have halted the implementation of palm scanners in the school system until further notice, WBAL reports.

At a Board of Education meeting, Carroll County Public Schools Superintendent Steve Guthrie said the decision to stop implementing the scanner in the district was made after some parents had expressed privacy concerns.

“I made the decision to suspend it after concerns were raised by the community,” Guthrie said in the WBAL article. “There was a division between those who were for the palm scanner and those who were against it. I do not intend to alienate any segment of our community. It’s my job to unite the community, not create divisions.

The goal of the palm scans was to increase participation in the school system lunch program. The total cost of the program would have been $300,000 plus maintenance contracts with PalmSecurea Fujitsu property, the Examiners’ reports.

Previously, school officials said they hoped the scanners would be installed in all 43 county schools within the next year and a half.

According to Reviewer’s articleCarroll Country elementary students participating in a pilot program were scanned before the school offered parents the option to opt out.

Guthrie announced yesterday that the county school board will not remove palm scanners that have already been installed and will not install the rest of the equipment without “further notice”.

Public schools in Carroll County, Maryland aren’t the first to consider implementing a biometric system for their lunchtime cafeteria program. As previously reported in, in November the Treviglas Community College also introduced a biometric fingerprinting system to allow students to purchase food cashlessly and ensure those in need of subsidized meals are fed.

Article topics

biometrics | palm tree print | palmar vein authentication | schools


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