A couple has filed a lawsuit against the Lake Travis, Texas, school district in one of the first legal challenges over computerized background-check systems used to vet visitors in a growing number of schools, reports the Austin American-Statesman. In a lawsuit filed last month against the district and Bee Cave Elementary School Principal Janie Braxdale, Yvonne and Larry Meadows say the district’s background-check policy violates their constitutional rights to freedom of association and freedom from unreasonable search and seizure, as well as several state laws. Lake Travis uses software and equipment from Houston-based Raptor Systems to scan information encoded in the magnetic strip on driver’s licenses and other identification cards. The software sends each visitor’s full name, birth date, license number, and photo over the internet; checks the information against Raptor’s national database of registered sex offenders; and prints out a visitor’s badge with his or her name and picture. The company serves 5,000 schools nationwide; its Texas clients also include the Dallas school district and the Southside school district in San Antonio. The Meadowses said in their suit that when the Bee Cave campus began using the software in the fall of 2006, the principal refused to allow Yvonne Meadows to attend several school events unless her driver’s license was scanned. Meadows refused and filed a formal grievance with the district, asking that Lake Travis officials instead check her sex-offender status by comparing her full name to the Department of Justice’s online national sex offender database. Meadows said in an interview that while she does not have a criminal record, she objected to allowing the school to scan her driver’s license because she was concerned about identity theft and about allowing a private company to collect her personal information…

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