The Parent Coalition for Student Privacy and the Coalition for a Commercial-Free Childhood released their Parent Toolkit for Student Privacy on May 16th. Full disclaimer, I actively participate and sometimes contribute to discussion surround student data privacy with the Parent Coalition for Student Privacy.
As our schools dive into more and more digital technology in classrooms, many parents have seen things that disturb them. Is our children’s data protected? Not as much as you think it might be. The laws surrounding student data privacy are filled with loopholes and confusing wording. It is more imperative than ever that parents wake up to this new reality facing their children.
To that end, I highly praise this report and believe every single school, state agency involving education, and any organization around education should give this to every single parent. Opting out is NOT just about standardized tests, it is also about unwelcome intrusions into things about our children that, frankly, are nobody’s business.
They say timing is everything. No sooner do I write an article about student data and big companies dealing with that data and then the Delaware State Board of Education puts up their agenda for their next meeting on October 15th. One of their proposed regulations actually deals with Student Health Records. Regulation 811 defines these records as the following, with a cross-out being the old regulation and the underlined being what they want to add:
Delaware School Health Record Form” means anformelectronic document containing documentation of aninformation about a student’s health information, which includes but is not limited to identifying informationthe student’s name, gender, birthdate, health history, immunizations, results of mandated testing and screenings, medical diagnoses, long termissued medications and treatments, and referrals.
So if this regulation passes, no longer would a tangible health form be sent from one school to another, it would be sent electronically. And all the information would be stored on an electronic Delaware School Health Record. Just more evidence of the hardcore data and cataloguing of Delaware students by the DOE…Sorry folks, with everything I’ve figured out with this state agency, I don’t trust this one at all. This regulation is up for discussion, not action.