Protecting Student Data as an Educator

Protecting Student Data as an Educator

Educators are using technology in the classroom more than ever, and that puts them on the front line of protecting student data. Student data privacy is more than just a nice thing to do; both by federal and state mandate, it is the law. So what can educators do to make sure they are taking necessary precautions to protect themselves, their students, and their districts? These are the recommended best practices for educators:

Don’t Go Rogue

Even if your school district has yet to implement policies about downloading and using edtech that has not been properly vetted, it’s a good idea to avoid free tech. Free edtech can often be a doorway to data theft. The only edtech solutions that teachers should use in the classroom are ones that have been properly vetted by your district’s IT leaders.

Don’t Manually Upload Roster Data

Secondary to downloading and using rogue edtech, teachers are often prompted to upload student data manually. This can put the data almost immediately at risk. Instead, work with your district to ensure that any vendor you want to use for your classroom is properly vetted and connected through your single sign-on solution to ensure the secure transmission of necessary PII.

Be Open with Parents and Guardians

When you do implement edtech to use with your students, be sure your students’ parents and guardians are aware of the use of the program and what information about the students is being collected. Explain the benefit of using the solution and how it aligns with the students’ curriculum.

Advocate for EdTech You Find Useful

Sometimes districts choose edtech solutions based on cost per student or because it comes as part of a bundle. If it’s not useful for you, it’s important to provide feedback to your district and advocate for the solutions that render meaningful outcomes that can be measured by student progress and success. At the same time, if you know there is a tool that will work for your students, but it has not been accepted by the district, make a pitch to vet the solution.

The days of leaving student data privacy to the school IT team are gone. It will take everyone – student, parents, teachers, and administrators – to work together to protect student data.

GG4L, a public benefit corporation, offers a cost-effective enterprise-grade solution to schools that includes a pre-vetted library of more than 1,000 edtech vendors. It’s the easiest and most cost-effective way to protect student data privacy. Learn more.

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