On the Block: Student Data and Privacy in the Digital Age

Organization: National Education Policy Center
Author: Alex Molnar and Faith Boninger
Published: April 1, 2015

As legislators develop statutory language and district leaders develop their contracting policies, the authors of this report recommend that they review the comprehensive guidelines detailed in the Electronic Privacy Information Center’s Student Privacy Bill of Rights. They also recommend that policymakers develop policies that encompass not only the privacy of student educational records but also the wide variety of student data (including anonymized data that may now be collected and shared). These policies should explicitly address the potential commercial use of any data collected. Finally, they recommend that the burden of protecting student data be placed not only on schools and districts but also on any private vendors with access to student data. This would align the interests of all parties, public and private, in protecting student privacy