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ID Card Tracks Students on CTA

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The CTA and Chicago Public Schools are launching an ID program that could track students’ usage of public transportation. It also opens the possibility of keeping tabs on truants.

Right now, students have to carry up to three cards to get a reduced fare. The new cards combine a student’s ID and a CTA pass in one. But aside from administrative cost savings, CTA President Ron Huberman says there’s another reason for the experimental ID card.

HUBERMAN: Chicago Public Schools has shared with us that their goal is to have this data available, that they can seek it from us if a kid gets in trouble, if they have to track the wherabouts of a kid who may have gotten lost, may have gotten hurt.

District spokesperson Mike Vaughn confirms it will be testing the IDs at two schools. As for tracking kids skipping class, he says it would have to look into the legal implications of that. But he says it could be possible with a parent’s permission. Vaughn adds the district would like to do whatever it can to keep students in school more often.

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