Texas students are said to be sent home with ID kits designed to collect DNA and fingerprints

HOUSTON, TX (KTRK) — Chin up parents. In the next few weeks, Texas public school students in kindergarten through eighth grade will be coming home with child ID kits.

The kits collect an inkless fingerprint and DNA sample to identify students in an emergency.

The equipment distribution follows the mass shooting in Uvalde, raising eyebrows from some parents. In fact, however, they were already prescribed by the state parliament in 2021.

The child ID kits are voluntary identification cards intended to be kept by legal guardians who can give them to law enforcement authorities to potentially assist in locating missing or trafficked children.

The state of Texas distributes them through the Texas Education Agency.

RELATED: The Texas Tribune and other newsrooms are suing to force Uvalde officials to release shooting records

In Texas classrooms, approximately 3.8 million children will bring home a kit this month.

Resembling a tri-fold booklet, the kits allow you to document your child’s physical description, record an inkless fingerprint and place a saliva sample on the paper.

The distribution to millions of children shortly after the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde and three years after the mass shooting at Santa Fe High School has some parents concerned about the state’s priorities.

“It was almost like the state just throwing up their hands and saying, ‘There’s nothing we can do about the guns. We will not change any of the laws. So the next best thing is to make sure that we can identify your K even though it’s an eighth grader if he’s killed in any type of school accident,'” said Anthony Crutch, parent of Clear Creek ISD.

SEE ALSO: After the Uvalde tragedy, Abbott hires “intruder detection” experts to better protect Texas schools

The kits come from the National Child Identification Program after the state legislature passed SB-2158 in the summer of 2021, following the Santa Fe school shooting but before Uvalde.

ABC13 reached out to the bill’s sponsor, Senator Donna Campbell. Her office said the kits are for parents in case a child goes missing.

The National Child Identification Program says they previously worked with the state of Texas to distribute the cards to kindergarten students during Rick Perry’s tenure, but due to a 12-year hiatus in the program, they are now forwarding the cards to all public schools Home district and open enrolled charter school students in kindergarten through eighth grade.

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Russell Falcon

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