Oologah-Talala Schools Serve Lunch By A Fingerprint

Thursday, September 3rd 2009, 4:57 pm
By: News On 6

By Tara Vreeland, The News On 6

OOLOGAH, OK -- The good ole' days of giving the kids lunch money before they head out to catch the school bus may be history.  The Oologah-Talala School District has now advanced to fingerprinting students.

The district's superintendent recalls how things worked when he was in school.

"We had the little white cards that clipped them off, you know, lunch tickets. You get through and then you throw it away. And then, you get another little card," Superintendent Rick Thomas.

Those days are now over.

The Oologah-Talala School District has gone high tech, a bit 007 if you will.  The district is now fingerprinting for food.

"I think it's just another step with technology. Technology is amazing in the direction that we're going with it and the things we can use it for is just another step in that direction," said Rick Thomas.

Punching student numbers into keypads slowed down the line and students would have to punch in their number which slowed down the line.

"We typed it in but it was really difficult because the numbers were really sticky and stuff. People would get their hands wet and I don't know it would be just slick and stuff so this is a lot easier," said Kira.

If parents or high school students prefer not to be fingerprinted, they can opt out. But, the superintendent says the prints are for school use only.

"There's programs out there that adults or parents can have that their kids can be fingerprinted and it goes into a system for law enforcement but this has nothing to do with that," said Superintendent Rick Thomas.

Sanitation isn't the primary concern.

"Is it sanitary? I don't know, but it isn't any worse than it was with the keypad?" said Superintendent Rick Thomas.

It's all about efficiency.

"It's worked well for our cafeteria ladies as far as making the line move faster," said Superintendent Rick Thomas.  "They don't have to worry about someone else getting their kids' number, using their number for lunch. It's easier not keeping up with a card."