Primary school children should be eligible for the DNA database if they exhibit behaviour indicating they may become criminals in later life, according to Britain's most senior police forensics expert.[more]
But it should OK with the poorly-fed Brits 'cause they've already been fingerprinting the little buggers, wot?
Junior education minister Lord Adonis defended some schools' use of biometric data for the attendance register, and access to meals and libraries.[more]
He said fingerprints were destroyed once pupils left the school, and were only taken with parents' consent.
But Lib Dem, Tory and crossbench peers criticised the practice as intrusive, alarming and "completely astonishing".
For the Lib Dems, Baroness Walmsley said: "The practice of fingerprinting in schools has been banned in China as being too intrusive and an infringement of children's rights. Yet here it is widespread."
Crossbencher Baroness Howe said: "Most people would be somewhat alarmed by the idea of having fingerprints taken and would have connected it with criminal offences."
A Tory peer, Baroness Carnegy, asked Lord Adonis: "Are you not concerned that the impression children are going to get of what it is to live in a free country and what it is to be British if, in order to get the right school meals, they can have fingerprints taken? It seems to me completely astonishing."