Take a good look at that first Register story. It says:
David Smith, deputy information commissioner, said: “For us to come out now and say fingerprinting isn’t allowed would be very difficult because these systems have come in over the last four years. We were asked about them and we said it was okay.”
Roughly translated, that means: we may have got it wrong, but it’s too late now. Instead, the Information Commissioner’s Office will cover their embarrassment by working with the DfES to produce guidance for schools on something the schools shouldn’t actually be doing in the first place.
Given that we first complained about school fingerprinting to the ICO around 4 years ago, and then again last year, only to be told that there wasn’t a data protection problem, you can perhaps understand that we might be feeling pretty peeved.