NASD considers using fingerprint scanning for cafeteria, employee time clock

Published 12:55 am Wednesday, October 19, 2016


NATCHEZ — Natchez-Adams School District students may soon be paying for their lunches with the touch of a finger.

The NASD Board of Trustees discussed at its Tuesday meeting the possibility of moving to a fingerprinting system in school cafeterias.

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The district also plans to soon implement an employee time clock system in which employees will essentially clock in with a fingerprint.

Superintendent Fred Butcher brought up the possibility of updating the cafeteria system during a report about the time clock system, speaking specifically about updates needed at Robert Lewis Magnet School, which also included new furniture.

Butcher said the time clock fingerprinting system was included in the school district’s budget. The district’s administration, however, did not anticipate a $1,200 monthly fee, Butcher said, and is working to find funds for the expense.

NASD Business Manager Monica Anderson said after the meeting the time clock fingerprinting system would cost the district between $36,000 and $48,000. That cost would include 20 computers, fingerprinting machines, software and maintenance.

Anderson said the district does not have an estimated cost for a cafeteria fingerprinting system and is currently reviewing proposals for systems.

Butcher said an update of the cafeteria operations will help with efficiency and mean that a staff member will not necessarily have to be at every checkout line.

The administration considered issuing cards to students to use in cafeterias, but Butcher said he is concerned students might lose the cards. The fingerprinting system would eliminate the need for students to carry a card, Butcher said.

A time clock fingerprinting system, Butcher said, will save the district paperwork as well as update its outdated system of using time cards.

In addition to the fingerprinting systems, Butcher said the district’s administration is also eyeing other technology updates, including NASD’s website.

Butcher said the administration had preferred to wait until the state department of education could evaluate NASD’s technology department to make changes.

“But we’ve had two appointments and two cancellations, so there are some things we need to go ahead and go (on with).”

Butcher said he looks to implement at least the time clock fingerprinting system by the end of the Thanksgiving break.

Board member Phillip West suggested that if the district decides to implement fingerprinting systems for employees and cafeterias that a backup plan is put in place in the event the system goes down.

In other news from the meeting:

4The school board was presented with a document created for students, parents and employees to voice complaints to the district’s administration.

Butcher said the form would allow the district to create a paper trail for a complaint. He said the district has faced problems in the past of a complaint changing multiple times throughout the resolution process. The form would also help the district put in place a timeframe in which complaints will be resolved.