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School ID Card Solutions

Shop K12 School ID Card Solutions

We've bundled our best, most reliable card printers, supplies, and accessories into three complete ID card systems to meet the specific needs of K12 schools. It's everything you need to start printing your school ID cards in one all-inclusive economical solution. Get award-winning service from our knowledgeable ID Professionals. Rely on our experts for support before, during, and after your purchase. Shop the best printer brands and supplies on our easy-to-navigate website.

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Have Questions about School ID Systems? We Have Answers!

Why Choose a Comprehensive ID Card System?

A comprehensive school ID card system combines all the critical essentials needed to get your ID card program up and running – smoothly, efficiently, and most importantly, cost-effectively. And while an ID card printer can always be purchased on its own, it typically does not include the necessary supplies you need to immediately launch your program. With a comprehensive school ID card system from ID Wholesaler, you will enjoy a printer plus all of the essential supplies needed for a successful ID card program, right out of the box!

Our bundled school systems contain supplies and equipment that work seamlessly together. Our systems include a printer, software, ribbon, cards, training, and badge accessories. Plus, each system can easily be customized to your school's unique needs. For example, you can change the type of card, add printer features, upgrade to a more advanced ID software, explore customized training options, and add extended warranty and/or loaner coverage.
Not only can a school system from ID Wholesaler make the purchase decision easier; it also aligns more closely with a tightly managed budget. It's a convenient and economical way to establish an effective ID card printing program at your school.
What's the Difference Between a Single-Sided and Dual-Sided School ID Card System?
The difference between these ID card systems is simple. A single-sided school ID card system is capable of printing on one side of your school IDs, and a dual-sided system can print on both sides of your cards one, single process.
If your school ID cards will only include basic or a limited amount of information, a single-sided system may be the ideal solution.
On the other hand, if your cards will include more cardholder information, a dual-sided ID card system will preserve and organize the card design and layout. Printing some information on the back of your school IDs will keep the front of your cards looking their best!
If your school ID card requirements or usage changes in the future, a proactive approach may be to invest in a school ID system that features a printer with easy upgrade capabilities. Several of our single-sided printers may be easily upgraded to dual-sided printing capability when you need it. Plus, many single-sided printers can be upgraded to encode magnetic stripe. Some printers can even be upgraded with the ability to add lamination to your cards.
Which ID Card System is Right for my School?

Recommended School ID Card Solutions
To help make your job easier, we've done the research and developed three comprehensive ID card system solutions to meet the specific and unique needs of K12 schools.

Compare School ID Systems>>

I Need to Store or Access Data on my School ID Cards. What are my Card Encoding Options?

There are three options: a barcode, magnetic stripe, or smart card each allow you to access or store different levels of data on school ID cards. With each, you can allow cardholders to enter the school, make lunchroom purchases, and/or checkout library books – all with a single school ID card.

Barcode Printing

Barcodes are the least expensive way to "store and access" data on a card and require the least amount of equipment, yet they are also the least secure.

A barcode allows you to easily access data on a card and does not require an encoding ID card printer or software with encoding capabilities. This is because the data is not stored within the barcode, but rather electronically in a computer. You simply need to make sure that your printer ribbon has a black resin panel to create crisp, easy-to-scan barcodes.

Requirements: All card printers are capable of adding a 1-D or 2-D barcode to a plastic card. You will simply need a barcode scanner connected to a computer that contains the barcode's data to read the barcode.

Magnetic Stripe Encoding

While a barcode's information is kept in a computer, a magnetic stripe's data is stored within the magnetic stripe of the school ID card. For example, when used for building access, each student or staff ID card holds data that will unlock preprogrammed doors. Simply swipe the card and, if you are a validated user of that door, it will unlock.

There are two types of magnetic stripe cards:

High Coercivity (HiCo) magnetic stripe cards are harder to erase and used in applications where cards are frequently used or need to have a long life. HiCo stripes are resistant to damage from most magnets or magnetic fields and are most often used for access control or time and attendance.
Low Coercivity (LoCo) magnetic stripe cards require a lower amount of energy to record and are easier to erase. LoCo stripes can be damaged by even a brief contact with a magnetic field, so they are typically used for applications where the card is only used for a short time, like visitor badges or theme parks.

Requirements: In order to use magnetic stripe cards, you will need an ID card printer that is capable of magnetic stripe encoding and mid-level or fully-featured ID software.

Smart Card and Proximity Card Encoding

Similar to a magnetic stripe card, data is stored within the smart card components. A smart card offers added functionality and can hold up to 100 times more data than a magnetic stripe. It can be reconfigured to add, erase, or edit hosted data. Smart cards can be categorized into two categories:

A contact smart card has an integrated chip. As the name implies, a contact smart card must come into direct contact with the reader in order to be read.
A contactless smart card has a chip and an antenna. In order to be read, it needs to come within a specified distance to the reader (varies by reader), but doesn't need to make direct contact.

Requirements: In order to print and encode a smart card, you'll need a smart card encoding printer and fully-featured ID software. This will enable you to print and encode cards for access control.

What Information can I put on my Cards?
The elements included on your school ID cards will help determine the features you should look for in your new ID card system. For this reason, it's important to have an understanding of what information, and how much information, will be printed on your cards as you shop for a school ID card system. Some card features will require special supplies or equipment.
To learn more, view the next slide or view the PDF below:


  1. Cardholder photo: If you already have student photos, they can be batch uploaded into the software when you print your student ID cards, saving time and money.
  2. Card design: ID software makes it easy to design your school ID cards and add images, text, school mascot, school colors, and more!
  3. Cardholder information: ID software also makes it convenient to manage the cardholder information on your school IDs. Software with database capability makes all of your cardholder data easily accessible.
  4. Barcode: You can add a barcode to your cards easily by using photo ID software. Barcodes are a cost-effective way to make your cards more versatile.


  1. Dual-sided printing: Printing some of your cardholder data on the back of your cards will keep the front of your cards looking clean and uncluttered. Dual-sided printers (also called "duplex printers") print on both sides of your card in a single process, saving you time and money.
  2. Magnetic stripe: Mag stripes store cardholder data right on your cards so they can be swiped and used in a variety of applications. Card printers with mag stripe encoding capability print and encode your cards in one convenient process

  1. Lamination: Lamination is a thin film that is applied to the surface of cards during the printing process by printers with this capability. Lamination makes cards more durable so they last longer than non-laminated cards.
  2. Magnetic stripe: Magnetic stripes store cardholder data right on your cards so they can be swiped and used in a variety of applications. Card printers with mag stripe encoding capability print and encode your card sin one convenient process.