Are Your Child's Social Security Numbers Safe?

By Wyatt Goolsby
NewsWest 9

Getting your identity stolen is bad enough, but what if it was your child's? One parent in Fort Stockton said it's a serious concern at the High School. And he said it's all connected to taking those TAKS tests.

Regular benchmark testing at Fort Stockton High School as part of the tests have been going on for years. However, with so many students' names and social security numbers out in the open during those benchmark tests, it has some parents wondering if there's a serious risk of identity theft.

"If the teacher has the piece of paper with all the students names and social secruity numbers on it, anyone can just waltz in, take that piece of paper, and now they have plenty of identities that they can take," said David Saunders, whose daughter attends the High School.

Saunders said he's worried about the school's policy with benchmark tests. He said his daughter shouldn't have to give out her private information so publicly. And he adds, it's not just his daughter who has to write down her social security number.

"In addition we heard from my niece, my niece said that she had a teacher who wanted her to write her social secruity number even on her daily work," explained Saunders.

But Gregory Nelson, the principal, said that the social security number in most cases, is connected to the student's state identity number, which is all part of state guidelines.

"But the key issue here is, people are considered about fraud in general, with losing your identity, and you know, we take every step that we can to protect that, however as long as the state continues to utilize that as there main identifying number, we'll have to do the same," said Nelson.

He also said that teachers at the school are well trained and understand proper procedure whenever they are dealing with confidential information. And administrators added that even with all the training that goes into giving out one of the tests, they said there's always a possiblity that information could be stolen. But they add they do their best to keep their students' vital information confidential.