California School District Uses GPS to Track Truant Students

David Murphy:

Not even Ferris Bueller himself could have gotten around this one: A six-week pilot program by California’s Anaheim Union High School District is testing the use of technology to combat tardiness amongst the district’s seventh- and eighth-grade population.
How it works is fairly simple. Students with four or more unexcused absences in a year–approximately 75 are enrolled in the Anaheim test–are given handheld GPS devices instead of detentions or prosecutions. To make sure that said students are in school when they should be, the students are required to check in using the devices during five preset intervals: When they leave for school in the morning, when they arrive at school, lunchtime, when they leave school, and at 8 p.m. each day.
And if that’s not enough, students in the program also receive a phone call each and every day to tell them that it’s time to get up and get to school. An adult coach also calls the students three times per week to check up and discuss different methods the students can employ to ensure that they’re where they should be at any given point during the day.