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GPS Tracking for Kids: How to Balance Safety with Independence

Author: Jayde Walker   Date Posted:15 November 2019 

GPS trackers can bridge the gap between concerned parents and independent kids. Modern families are seeing the benefits. But balance between freedom + tracking is key.


By Jayde Walker

15th November 2019


There are many debates about whether GPS tracking devices are helpful or harmful for children.

If you’re a parent or career and felt the panic of losing a child – even for a moment, it’s easy to understand why families invest in location tracking.

But whilst losing track of a child is a terrifying prospect, there’s a fine line between the freedom to explore and grow, and safety.

The right GPS tracker can strike a balance between giving your child independence while preserving peace of mind. For the arrangement to work though, it’s important to involve them in the process.

Personal GPS trackers for children or teenagers aren’t intended to invade privacy. They’re an effective solution to protect family when used with everyone’s right to privacy and security in mind.

Considering purchasing one? Here’s how to balance safety with independence. 

Benefits vs Cons

GPS trackers, although valuable for safety, can have fears of hindering a child’s development of freedom and “street smarts”. If parents are looking over their kid’s shoulder 24/7, can they develop a false sense of security? Or worse, rebel and act out because of limited privacy?

The key is balance.

Children and young teens have a right to privacy as much as anyone else. Keep a balance between independence vs tracking. This can be achieved through private spaces where kids are able to play and grow without constantly feeling watched, combined with GPS trackers for safety in certain circumstances only for example; heading to and from school or when driving to monitor driving behaviours.  

It’s up to each family to determine the intent for a GPS tracker and whether it’s the right choice. Some benefits and risks to consider are:



Why Use GPS Trackers for Children or Young Teens?

Some reasons parents use GPS trackers for children and teens are:

How to Communicate the Idea with Your Kids

GPS trackers are useful when it comes to child security, with information about their whereabouts, health status and more at the tip of your fingers.

However, it’s beneficial to communicate the idea with them to explain purpose and frequency. Children also need to be made aware than GPS technology is a safety aid, not a “superhero” to pull them out of trouble. They still need to be careful when out and about.

Despite cases for and against GPS trackers on kids, the technology benefits many families. Some devices are designed for parental use with children boasting features that meet specific needs. For example, emergency SOS features, two-way communication, do not disturb time settings, pinpoint GPS tracking and functional smartwatch options.

Covert monitoring may be possible (check local state and federal laws in your area first) but most parents find more success being open about tracking to explain its purpose. Data gathered from such devices should be used to help with responsibility and safety, whilst ensuring their security is your primary concern.

Interested in more information? Contact our team or follow our blog.

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