Assemblymember Wallace: Education Commissioner Right to Ban Facial Recognition Technology in Schools

“I applaud New York State Education Commissioner Rosa for her decision to ban the use of facial recognition technology in schools statewide. This was the right decision and in the best interests of students in New York. The Commissioner’s decision follows the recommendation of the New York State Office of Information Technology Services in a recently issued report, which found that the risks and potential harms from using facial recognition technology in schools far outweigh any potential benefits. The technology is expensive, unproven and prone to misidentifying children and people of color. Other concerns include the potential for creating a surveillance environment in schools and the risk of student’s biometric data being compromised.

“I’m proud to have worked with my colleagues in the Legislature to create a moratorium on the use of this technology pending an opportunity for the Office of Information Technology Services, the state Education Department, and other stakeholders to study this issue. Their extensive study and report validated many of the concerns we raised in the Legislature, and I thank them for their work. I also thank Governor Hochul for her support of the legislation creating the moratorium and for signing it into law.”