- The Washington Times - Monday, June 17, 2013

A school in Florida said it was a mistake to cull students’ biometric information and scan their irises without first receiving their parents’ permission.

Parents were given a chance to opt out of the blossoming Polk County School District program — but the opt-out letter was sent out too late. By the time parents learned of the pilot program, the company that was hired to collect the data — Stanley Convergent Security Solutions — had already captured data from 750 children, Fox News reported.

The data was aimed at tracking the children on bus rides, Fox News said.

Rob Davis, a district administrator, said the school was in the wrong, but that staff has since changed policy to ensure nothing like that happens again. But Connie Turlington, the parent of an 11-year-old boy who was scanned at the Davenport School of the Arts, said the mistake was hardly a mistake.

“It sounds like a simple case of it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission,” she said, Fox News reported.

A spokesman with the scanning company, meanwhile, said it has deleted the children’s biometric information.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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