Student and staff identification cards are central to operations at the Rock Falls Township High School in Rock Falls, Ill. Rock Falls Township High School is a public, four-year school that currently serves about 750 students. It offers a full range of academic and vocational educational opportunities, along with extracurricular activities such as clubs and sports.
The identification cards serve several purposes, ensuring that students and staff are authorized to be on campus. The card also keeps track of students checking books out of the library, allows eligible students on school buses and identifies freshmen, who are not allowed to leave campus during the school day.
KEEPING IT SIMPLEIn order to keep costs down and be able to get cards to students as quickly as possible, Rock Falls Township High School chose to create their cards on site and on demand using a Zebra printer. The standalone dual-sided color printer prints sharp, readable ID photographs, graphics and text from card edge to card edge in seconds.
“The goal that we were trying to accomplish with this printer is to get the students their ID cards the night of their registration,” explains Janet Johnson, main office secretary at Rock Falls Township High School.
CARDS OF PLENTY“During registration, 750 students come through the school over three nights. We take their picture and give them the card on their night.” Student identification cards include their photograph, name, student identification number, plus an encoded barcode that is used for the library. Emergency contact information is printed on the back of the card. The cards also indicate if the student is a freshman by using a different background color and if the student is eligible for a bus ticket, “bus” is placed on the card.
The cards also inconspicuously denote students who are eligible for a free or reduced-cost lunch with a small five-digit code. “We have found the printer easy to use, and reliable,” reports Johnson. “The quality is really nice.”
Basketball is a particularly popular sport in Rock Falls, with the Runnin’ Rockets games a major draw. The school uses the printer to create building passes and all-season sports passes that the public and parents may purchase. The card printer creates similar passes for use by the school’s various clubs.
Two Rock Falls Township High School staff members have been trained to use the printer and they are able to create all of the school’s cards on site and on demand. “The Zebra printer has helped our operations,” Johnson affirms. “We currently have no plans to upgrade—we like what we’ve got right now.”
About the SourceSecurity Magazine thanks Janet Johnson, main office secretary of Rock Falls Township High School for this information.
SIDEBAR: The System SpecsDual-sided Card Printer
The P420i is a dual-sided, full color printer that prints high quality, personalized cards in high volume applications. The enclosure includes a viewing window to monitor the printing process without opening the unit. The printer ribbon synchronizes automatically, eliminating the need for operator intervention. A self-cleaning cartridge thoroughly removes dust before printing, eliminating card rejects due to dust contamination.
The printer simplifies card printing via automatic driver configuration, intelligent color optimization and a special RFID system for ribbon image counter and ribbon low notification.