A continnum of my post http://3rseduc.blogspot.com/2013/06/who-needs-to-know.html............
There is rumor of"opt-out" to CCSS and the LDS data collection, and I have heard many anecdotes of parents whose information is collected without permission. A well known example would be the iris scanning incident (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2336020/Parents-angered-schools-conduct-Minority-Report-like-iris-scans-students-young-asking-permission.html). However, supposedly law is in place to prevent such things,
"The Fair Information
Practice of Transparency calls for “providing
notice to the individual regarding the collection,
use, dissemination, and maintenance of personally
identifiable information” (NIST 2010 Special
Publication 800-122, p. D-2, 3)."
This links to FERPA which was changed in 2011 (after publication of this document) which is referenced here http://dianeravitch.net/2013/04/08/why-is-the-us-department-of-education-weakening-ferpa/ and http://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/pdf/sealea_overview.pdf to cite a few sources.
But don't fear, folks....
"A school or district is also required to provide an
annual Directory notice, if directory information
is disclosed without consent. The school or district
may choose to combine their annual FERPA
notification with their annual Directory notice.
Directory information includes information
contained in a student’s education record that
would not generally be considered harmful or an
invasion of privacy if disclosed. The Directory
notice must describe the specific types of
information the school or district has designated
as directory information, and the parent’s right to
opt out of disclosure of directory information. In
the case of postsecondary institutions, these rights
accrue to the student."
Of course, I have worked in schools and perhaps I'm out of the loop and was out of the loop as data and assessment coordinator but I've never seen this directory or heard mention of it. I hope exists but my guess is it is published in the district office and sits in a binder; no one is ever notified of it, the fact that it is law is apparently enough notification.
Collecting data is, again, supposedly a very public motion with an opt-out program but it isn't quite that cut and dry. All the info you submit when enrolling a child (ie a photo id of parents, utility bills, birth certificate) are all "mandatory" for enrollment and often end up in the data systems. I mean, I guess that is common sense but parents often do not think of it as such, and they are not alerted to the collection and use of the data past enrollment purposes.
"The Pupil Protection Rights Act requires parental
notification if a study to be conducted in a school
includes any information or questions about the
student or the student’s family related to the eight
identified sensitive topics: political affiliations or
beliefs; religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs;
mental and psychological problems; sex behavior
or attitudes; illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating If the study is funded by the U.S. Department of
Education, schools and contractors must obtain
written parental consent before minor students
can be required to participate in the study. If the
school received funds from the U.S. Department of
Education, school districts are required to provide
an annual schedule of the specific or approximate
dates of all other surveys with a notification of
the parents’ right to request and review a copy of
the survey before it is administered and to decide
that their child will not participate, reagrdless
of the survey’s source of funding. Under this
Act, parents must also be notified each year of
their right to decide whether or not their child
will participate in activities that make student’s
personal information available for marketing or
other profit-making activities."
Again, I have yet to see these "notifications" and keep hearing from parents of breech of this law/procedure.
Things often get lost in "legalese" and below you can see that permission to use a student's data is permissible without notification when sharing with school officials and other designated entities with legitimate educational interests. What might that mean? I have yet to get an answer and suspect it could mean volunteers, government organizations (i.e. dept of health), testing companies, think tanks, researchers, textbook companies, and corporations.
"The annual FERPA notice provides information
about permissible uses of PII in education records.
That is, FERPA allows educational agencies
and institutions to non-consensually release
education records to school officials and other
designated entities with legitimate educational
interests 20 U.S.C. § 1232g(b(1)(A)"
To confirm or ease my fears, here is some more "legalese",
third-party contractor, consultant,
volunteer, or other party to whom an
agency or institution has outsourced
institutional services for which the
agency or institution would otherwise
use employees—as long as that third
party’s use and maintenance of education
records is under the direct control of the
agency or institution and is subject to
the regulation requirements governing
the use and redisclosure of PII from
.....The disclosure is to organizations conducting
studies for, or on behalf of, educational
agencies or institutions for specified
purposes related to predictive tests, student
aid programs, or the improvement of
.............The disclosure is in connection with a health
or safety emergency .............."
So yes corporations, government officials, volunteers etc can see the data. And what defines a health or safety emergency? A natural disaster, yes....but could there be a "psychological risk screening", "immunization study" or other "emergency" where data is collected? Again, the answer is unclear.
Can you view your child's records to ensure compliance?t Yes....kind of. You probably will not know who else views their data but you can know what they view.... kind of. I have heard fro parents that is isn't just a walk in and see them scenario, that schools stall and send you from one person to another; some schools reportedly have even tried to charge a fee for the records. Regardless, here is the law.
"FERPA (20 U.S.C. § 1232g (a) and the related
regulations (34 CFR § 99) establish the right of
a parent to inspect and review his or her child’s
(or in the case of an eligible student his or her
own) education record for accuracy."
I hope these two posts, links, excerpts, and commentary have helped parents and educators at least know what is happening with data (even if some of this information is three years old, thus outdated).