A technology company with ties to a Rhode Island school district plans to test a student-tracking system by putting computer chips on grade-schoolers’ backpacks, an experiment the ACLU ripped on Jan. 7 as invasive and unnecessary.

The pilot program, set to start next week in the Middletown Public Schools, would have about 80 children put tags containing radio-frequency identification (RFID) chips on their school bags. It also would equip two buses with global positioning system (GPS) devices.

The school system and parents will be able to...

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