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Texas public schools distribute DNA kits to help identify kids in emergencies

Texas School Shooting Lawsuit
Posted at 9:47 AM, Oct 19, 2022

Texas public schools will send kids home with DNA kits to help parents identify their children's bodies in emergencies.

According to NBC News and The Washington Post, the state passed a law last year that required the Texas Education Agency to “provide identification kits to school districts and open-enrollment charter schools for distribution to the parent or legal custodian of certain students.”

The law was passed after eight students and two teachers were killed in a shooting at a high school in Santa Fe, Texas, the New York Times reported.

The distribution of the kits comes months after 19 children and two teachers were killed at a Uvalde, Texas, elementary school.

According to the news outlets, some of the Robb Elementary School victims were not easily identifiable due to their horrific injuries, so families had to provide DNA samples to help identify bodies.

The rollout of the kits has angered some parents, teachers and advocates of gun control, The Post reported.

“Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is choosing to send DNA kits to schools that parents can use to identify their children’s bodies AFTER they’ve been murdered rather than pass gun safety laws to proactively protect their lives,” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, in a tweet, per The Post.

The Houston Chronicle reported that distribution for the kits at the state's largest school district, Houston Independent School District, would start this week.

The news outlets reported that the optional kits would be provided to parents of all eligible K-6 students.

According to the National Child Identification Program website, the kits include an inkless fingerprint kit, DNA collection, and an inkless applicator.

The website stated that the data collected would then be stored in the child's home.