After two meetings, a tabled discussion and much debate, the Student Senate voted 18-11 to support the Faculty Senateâ€™s proposal of putting studentsâ€™ identification photos next to their names on class rosters. The Faculty Senate, looking for support from the student body, passed the proposal at the Sept. 21 meeting.
The Faculty Senate agreed that the main reason of this was so the faculty could have an easier way of knowing who was in each class; however, the Student Senate was very skeptical about the issue.
Many questions about privacy, cost and purpose arose when Brian Cronk, Faculty Senate member and professor of cognitive psychology, took the microphone.
â€œThere are over 200 brand new students for me to know each semester,â€ Cronk said, as he explained the reasoning behind the Faculty Senateâ€™s motives. â€œBy senior level I know them all, but freshman and sophomore levels become much harder.â€
There were multiple reasons that affected the implementation of this resolution, but Cronk wanted the senators to know that the newly-adopted attendance policy wasnâ€™t one of them. One of the reasons however, was that in the past Cronk used passing out exams as a way of getting to know the students. Now with WebCT it has become harder for him to do that because of online test taking.
After hearing Cronkâ€™s reasoning, Katy Schwartz, Student Senate chief of staff, was still concerned with the issue.
â€œMy high school teachers had more students than my college professors and they knew all of our names without needing pictures,â€ Schwartz said. â€œI think they are using it as a tool to not get to know the students as well.â€
Cronk also stressed that there were no requirements with this implementation. It is up to the discretion of the teacher whether or not photos are on his or her rosters. Also, pictures may be printed in black and white to reduce costs, and it is the studentsâ€™ decision whether to renew their photos.
IT Services is now in the process of creating a software that will attach the I.D. photo to the class roster. Whatever funding this may take is predicted to be very small and will come from the budget that IT Services already has.
The people who would be able to access the photo was another concern the student body had. Cronk assured that only the instructors of the classes and authorized entities such as the business, financial aid, registrarâ€™s and admissions offices would have access to the picture.
Student, Tara Duckworth, didnâ€™t see a necessary need for the implementation.
â€œIt doesnâ€™t seem like our security is high enough, but I donâ€™t oppose it because it doesnâ€™t affect you if youâ€™re in the right class,â€ Duckworth said.
â€œI think itâ€™s an issue, but not that big of an issue,â€ Schwartz said. â€œThere are bigger fish to fry than worrying about studentsâ€™ pictures on a roster.â€