Communicating with Parents and Students
Basic Parent Questions
Parents may come to you with questions. While more detailed questions may require that you refer them to a school administrator, you can prepare in advance for some of the most common parent questions, such as:
- What apps are you using in the classroom, and why are you using those apps?
- How can parents access their child’s education records?
- What kind of data is collected about students?
- How is student data used?
- Who has access to data about my child?
- Who is in charge of privacy in our district?
- How does our district hold ed tech companies and other service providers accountable for maintaining the confidentiality of the student data they receive?
You can see if your district has a student privacy FAQ handout, or create your own (you can always adapt the one on pages 16-18 of this Student Data Privacy Communications Guide) and provide it to parents.
Refer Parents to Other Resources
There are many great resources for parents on the internet! We think the parent page on FERPA|Sherpa and our Parents’ Guide to Student Data Privacy are particularly useful, but you can also refer parents to great state or district websites like:
- My favorite webpage ever: Wisconsin SEA Privacy Page
- Fairfax County Privacy Page
- Denver Public Schools Student Data Privacy Page
Don’t be afraid to steal content from other SEAs and LEAs and link to other great resources!
There are many other great ways to communicate. You could have an after-hours meeting with students and their parents about the apps you are using in your classroom and how you are ensuring student privacy. You could also teach students about their privacy at school.
Figure out how parents in your district can best be reached – by mobile phone, website, in person, etc – and meet them where they are. Push your district to be better about communicating on student privacy. Check out our favorite communications resource, the Foundation for Excellence in Education Student Data Privacy Communications Toolkit, for ideas and resources you can copy and paste.
Have other communications suggestions or materials that educators could use? Email them to us at [email protected].