UK Sixth Graders Become Test Subjects for Facial Scanning System


A performing arts school in the United Kingdom will shortly begin testing automated facial recognition to identify students who arrive late. St. Neots Community College, a school for 11- to 19-year-olds, will capture infrared photos of sixth graders and store the images in an encrypted form that will then be used to recognize them as they arrive.

According to news coverage, Northampton-based Aurora, the company selling the technology, claims that its product, Clockface+, can verify a person's identity in 1.5 seconds and shows greater accuracy than a human. The pilot project will be used to identify students who arrive late to school.

The Mail reported that students will be identified from up to a yard away by having a recognition device scan their faces using an infra-red light.

The face recognition system is already in use by construction companies to verify workers arriving and departing from the job site. Similar technology is used in passport checks.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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