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This Week in Student Privacy: 10/19

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Future of Privacy Forum announces release of two new papers
On October 15 the Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) announced the release of “Who is Reading Whom Now: Privacy in Education from Books to MOOCs,” by Jules Polonetsky and Omer Tene, and “Student Data: Trust, Transparency and the Role of Consent,” by Jules Polonetsky and Joseph Jerome. The first paper “seeks to separate the core ed tech privacy issues from the broader policy debates surrounding education standardization, the Common Core, longitudinal data systems and the role of business in education” and “proposes a broad range of solutions, from deployment of traditional privacy tools, such as contractual and organizational governance mechanisms, to greater data literacy by teachers and increased parental involvement.” The second paper “discusses how over the past decade, new technologies in schools have generated an “explosion of data” for public school systems to use and analyze.”

Older students teach junior high school students workshop in online privacy
The National Privacy & Data Governance Congress 2014, organized by the Privacy & Access Council of Canada, happened this week in Calgary, bringing together “professionals from interrelated domains so they can learn about the interdependencies between Privacy, Governance, Resilience, Security, Surveillance and Civil Liberties.” Workshops on online privacy were held for junior high school students, taught by older students. Sharon Polsky, the president of the Privacy & Access Council, says that the Council is working with other groups to get digital literacy and privacy issues included on school curricula across the country.

New resources from DQC
The Data Quality Campaign has a couple of new resources out with policy and practice recommendations. Student Data and Consent Policies: Avoiding Unintended Consequences suggests that “it is not feasible, however, to allow parents to limit the data schools collect about their child for administrative, instructional, or assessment and measurement purposes because it would hinder or minimize the impact of data’s use to improve student achievement and would strain everyday school functions.” Student Data Collection, Access, and Storage: Separating Fact from Fiction clarifies concerns around permanent records, which "do not exist in the form that is often characterized in public conversations about student data privacy."

Additional Articles/Resources

  • Elana Zeide, an attorney and research fellow at the Information Law Institute at New York University School of Law, released “The Proverbial ‘Permanent Record,’” examining “the concerns captured in the concept of the proverbial ‘permanent record,’ how closely these fears match and diverge from information flow surrounding SLDSs, and the [legal, technological, and administrative] ways that address these fears.”
  • Gaggle and Microsoft have both signed the “K-12 School Service Provider Pledge to Safeguard Student Privacy” created by the Future of Privacy Forum and the Software and Information Industry Association.
  • Although originally published in December 2013, Columbia University’s BWOG has just reposted an investigation by a student of Columbia’s surveillance, security, and privacy. You can find Part 1 and Part 2 here.
  • It’s Connected Educator month, and Pernille Ripp -- teacher, writer, and creator of the Global Read Aloud -- has a post on edSurge about “The Downside to Being a Connected Educator.”
  • iKeepSafe has two new programs to help schools and service providers meet the standards of federal privacy laws: the COPPA Safe Harbor Program and FERPA Assessment.
  • Check out Olga Garcia-Kaplan’s blog on FERPA|SHERPA, “Parent Perspectives on Privacy” for an engaging narrative on the intersection of schools, technology, and privacy.

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