News & Resources

Electronic background check would streamline screening process

Sep 08, 2011 Matt Roesly

School officials in Arlington, Texas, are considering a universal electronic identity verification system to vet visitors to district campuses, SecurityInfoWatch reports. Currently, each campus in the district uses its own badge system for identification of parents, speakers and other visitors, per each principal's discretion. However, a visitor entry system had been approved for the district in 2009, and staff members are now being asked to request vendor proposals. The new system would standardize security measures and protect against identity theft. However, some are worried the system might be too complex. "We want to make it convenient for parents to come in and visit with their kids," board president Peter Baron told the news source. "We don't want to keep our parents from coming in just because they're afraid of a new electronic system." Board vice president Bowie Hogg added that the new software would run a background check on each visitor to check for criminal histories or whether there is a restraining order against them that would prevent them from being near children. The Star-Telegram reports that state legislators recently passed a $172.3 billion budget for the next two years, but cut nearly $15 billion in state spending from public schools and higher education.