The Texas House passed a bill Thursday restricting access to school district employees‘ birth dates and other information, according to the Associated Press.
The privacy measure is part of a wider effort to conceal the personal information about public employees. Supporters of both moves say they are meant to prevent identity theft.
The current bill also conceals home addresses and cell phone numbers of public school employees, the AP reported.
Journalists and open-government advocates argued that birth date information is crucial to identify school district employees, particularly when checking the information against other public records to ensure they are reporting about the correct person.
The bill also includes a measure that would require school districts to disclose to the public any time they discover an employee has been convicted of a violent or sex-related crime, the AP said.