Nothing New Under the Sun: ID Policy Edition

So, just the other day as I rode home on the train, I was thinking to myself how nice it is not to have to be fighting about paper and copiers anymore, a thought that came to mind as I walked out of the building and saw the signs taped to the doors saying students would not be let in without their IDs. “This again,” I thought as I walked by, which drew my mind into other policy battles of the past (e.g., the Great Copy/Printer battles of 2012). Happily distracted by thoughts of gratitude I didn’t think much of the new ID policy, knowing that our active and effective Faculty Council was on the case and, surely, this wouldn’t be a thing again.

And then, just yesterday, I had a student show up at the very end of her class’ first examination, in the last two minutes of class, actually, apologizing and worried. She remembered having her ID with her at home in the morning, but somewhere between that memory and her arrival at school, she’d misplaced it. Unfortunately, she didn’t have ten dollars with her, nor a bank card to get some, so she had to go back home, get a check, get to a bank, cash it, return to school, pay the ten bucks, get a new ID and then find her professor and hope that she could get a make-up (which, as you surely can imagine) is not a guarantee for any college student.

In other words, this young woman could easily have lost the chance to pass the class (while, nevertheless on the hook for paying for it because she misplaced her ID one morning and goes to a school that refuses any other means than $10 to verify that she is in fact a student at the school. Had she been allowed to log in to Blackboard or MyCCC.edu on her phone or on a computer in the lobby, the security guards could have easily verified her status and purpose.

Talking to her, I had a tremendous sense of deja-vu. This policy is a policy that creates problems for our students by solving a problem for…whom exactly? Security? Administrators? Who? And then it hit me. We’ve seen this one before. And I wrote about it before. So I went back and found my post about the last time this happened, and re-read it, and found that EVERY SINGLE CRITICISM  applies now. Was SGA involved? Was Faculty Council (hint: No)? Is there data supporting broad HWC community desire for this policy (or some other reason–legal, safety (has there been a spike in thefts by unidentifiable visitors?)? Is this the plan to make up for the service-sucking state-budget-created black hole of a problem one Hamilton at a time? What problem is it solving and for whom? Who knows? So, why now? Good question.

Last time, in September of 2014, Margie “postponed the implementation of charging $10” for people without their ID. I guess that “postponement” ended the first week in February. But it’s not any less of a stupid policy. My student got her make-up exam and an apology from me for a school policy that made an already difficult and challenging day much much harder. That seems like the opposite of what our HWC values and aims are.

I just don’t get why this is a thing.

3 thoughts on “Nothing New Under the Sun: ID Policy Edition

  1. I wonder if there is any actual data that this policy actually makes us a safer campus?

    • Just this past Monday in our email we received this year’s HWC Clery Act report (available here: http://www.ccc.edu/colleges/washington/departments/Documents/Security/AnnualCampusSecurityReport.pdf), which is an amazing document of procedures and penalties, but also has our crime stats for 2013, 2014, and 2015 on pages 46 and 47. They look like this:

      Offense
      Year; 1) On Campus Property; 2) Non-Campus Property; 3) Public Property

      Murder/Non-negligent manslaughter
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Negligent manslaughter
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Sex offenses, Forcible Rape
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 1 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Sex offenses, ForcibleFondling
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Sex offenses, Non-forcible Incest
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Sex offenses, Non-forcible Statutory rape.
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Robbery
      2013 0 0 1
      2014 2 0 1
      2015 0 0 3

      Aggravated assault
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Burglary
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 1 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Motor vehicle theft
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Arson
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Arrests:
      Weapons: Carrying, Possessing, ETC.
      2013 0 0 1
      2014 2 0 1
      2015 0 0 0

      Disciplinary Referrals: Weapons: Carrying, Possessing, ETC.
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 2 0 0

      Arrests: Drug abuse violation
      2013 0 0 1
      2014 1 0 1
      2015 0 0 0

      Disciplinary Referrals: Drug abuse violations
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Arrests: Liquor law violations
      2013 0 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Disciplinary Referrals: Liquor law violations
      2013 1 0 0
      2014 0 0 0
      2015 0 0 0

      Seems pretty safe to me…

  2. I stand by my comment from that previous post. I had a student last semester encounter this. I way in complete disbelief when he told me of his ordeal to try to get home and make it back in time for class. What an unnecessary stress when we have technology. Why don’t we have pictures of students on file for this situation? We have their pictures if we’re making them IDs unless those pictures are wiped as soon as the idea is created. If I were a rich man, I would carry around a pocket full of $10’s to reimburse my students for this absurd fee.

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