New School Policy Requiring Students to Wear IDs Stirs Controversy


Jonathan Kim, Vice President

It was the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year at CCHS when the school district instituted a policy that would soon be controversial among students on campus — everyone would be required to wear their IDs around their necks using lanyards.

Sound familiar? 

12 years later, the school administration has implemented a near-identical policy, requiring all students and staff to wear IDs at all times. The school detailed the four main purposes of enacting this new rule — enhancing school security, fostering personal connections, streamlining day-to-day operations, and encouraging community involvement — this information is listed in the Aug. 29 newsletter sent to all students.

But a quick look around the school shows that just as it did 12 years ago, this new rule seems to be in jeopardy, as a vast majority of students have been seen without wearing their IDs with some speaking out against the policy.

“I think there’s a better way rather than putting an ID on people’s necks because that’s going to lead to hacking since your ID could be stolen so easily,” said student one, who asked to stay anonymous due to fear of potential repercussions. 

In addition to potential security issues, concerns over protecting students’ right to privacy was raised by one transgender student, who also requested anonymity to protect her identity. She specifically referenced her own personal experience in which after legally changing her name in November of last year, the school never updated the information on her ID card until the beginning of this year. 

“As the ID might not reflect students’ names … that information of one’s ID name being more accessible is not going to be good for incoming trans students and students who don’t want to share information like their name,” she said. “It demonstrates how bad ID design can be hostile to trans students, extrapolating from my own personal experiences.” 

She says that allowing students to edit their IDs and list optional names or require students to only show their ID upon request could be alternative possibilities to the current policy, although she worries that profiling could be an issue for the latter option. 

However, not every student believes that the policy is unnecessary. One student in support of the new rule, junior Jordan Shaw, says that it will help ensure a safer school environment as staff and security can easily identify those who do not belong on campus. But if the policy is not enforced, Shaw says that this decision will have a negative impact on the school.

“The school should not create rules that cannot be enforced because that will lead to disrespect to the school and administration,” Shaw said. “Unless the school actually enforces it, I don’t think the rule is worth anything.”

At the same time, he says that any potential consequences should be appropriate. 

“The school should start by giving warnings [to those not complying], and after three months when students get used to it the school should give trash pickup or something less than detention,” Shaw said. 

As of now, the school does not plan on giving consequences to students who do not wear their IDs, although they strongly recommend everyone to comply with the policy as a way of “proactively improving school security,” according to the Aug. 29 newsletter.

However, it was the sentiment of student one that encapsulated how many students at CCHS view the new policy.

“I understand that the school wants to enhance security … but making students wear IDs on their necks, they should change that,” he said.