Chinese schools track students with Smart Uniforms!

Ever wondered how to track school children? Well, Chinese schools have managed to give the solution to this very important issue.

These Chinese schools have invented a new way to track the exact locations of the children. This is done through a chip-equipped uniform which is commonly referred to as ‘smart uniform’. The news was released by The Telegraph who reported from The Global Times (a state-run newspaper).

The news –

Schools in China are promoting “intelligent uniforms” to better monitor students’ attendance and whereabouts.
More than 10 schools in Southwest China’s Guizhou Province and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region have adopted the uniforms.

If students wear the uniforms, the school authorities receive recorded accurate timing of their entry and exit; they automatically send the data to parents and teachers, said Lin Zongwu, principal of No. 11 School of Renhuai in Guizhou Province.
More than 800 students in his school have been wearing the intelligent uniforms since the fall of 2016.

According to Guizhou Guanyu Technology Company that provides the technology behind the “intelligent uniforms”; an automatic voice alarm activates if students wearing intelligent uniforms walk out of school without permission.

Through the help of the facial recognition equipment installed on the doors of schools; if students swap their uniforms, the alarm also rings.

Two chips are inserted in the shoulders of uniforms and can endure up to 150 C and 500 washes, Yuan Bichang, the company’s project manager, told the Global Times.
But the uniforms might provoke privacy concerns as the system can locate students even in non-school hours.

“We choose not to check the accurate location of students after school, but when the student is missing and skipping classes, the uniforms help locate them,” Lin said.
He noted that the attendance rate has largely increased since the application of intelligent uniforms.


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The Verdict –

As The Verge announced, the implementation is just about as unsettling as “using smart technology to track students’ whereabouts” sounds.

And while the uniforms are meant to encourage attendance, it seems that there’s nothing stopping administrators from using them to track students out of school, at least technologically speaking, which is certainly concerning. Although, according to Lin Zongwu, “We choose not to check the accurate location of students after school.

These uniforms basically have 2 chips in the shoulders of the uniform which are in fact used for the tracking purpose. The following are the basic extraordinary features of the uniforms –

  • These have a facial recognition software at the entrance/exit of the school gates; to find out whether the students are the right students.
  • The software also makes sure that the kid doesn’t leave the premises untimely.
  • These uniforms is the fact that these are even washable! Yes, it does have certain technology involved but you can wash it as they tend to withstand up to 150 degrees Celsius or 302 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • They can even undergo up to 500 washes.
  • The uniforms are capable of pointing if the kids have asleep during class hours.
  • The students can use payment options by facial or fingerprint recognition.

The uniforms till date are being used in 10 schools, i.e. in the Guizhou Province region of China, since 2016. Clearly, they have their own pros and cons; many countries can indeed take these uniforms as an example to further improve on the uniforms.

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Navaneetha Suresh

Navaneetha Suresh

Navaneetha, commonly known as "nav", loves to read, play badminton, play the keyboard and sing but when she's not doing any of those, she loves to write. What started as a high school hobby to write is now her ongoing passion.

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