The Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) and The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) introduced a Pledge to safeguard student privacy regarding the collection, maintenance, and use of student personal information.
An initial leadership group of major school service providers are joining SIIA and FPF to introduce and sign the Pledge. The group is made up of some of the leading names in education technology.
The commitments are intended to detail ongoing industry practices that meet and go beyond all federal requirements and to encourage service providers to more clearly articulate these practices.
The Pledge will hold school service providers accountable to:
It is critical that school service providers effectively communicate with parents, teachers and education officials about how student information is used and safeguarded.
The Pledge was developed by the FPF and SIIA with guidance from the school service providers, educator organizations, and other stakeholders following a convening by U.S. Representatives Jared Polis (CO) and Luke Messer (IN).
For more information about the Pledge, listen to the webinar held by FPF and SIIA in November, providing a breakdown of the Pledge requirements, and some FAQs about Pledge implementation.
National Parent-Teacher Association (PTA)"While technology is a powerful tool for teaching and learning, it is imperative that students’ personal information is protected at all times. National PTA applauds K-12 school service providers that have pledged to safeguard student data and privacy and effectively communicate with parents about how student information is used and protected. We look forward to even more support going forward.”
- Otha Thornton, President
Future of Privacy Forum (FPF)"These commitments clearly and concisely articulate a set of expectations that parents and education officials have for the safeguarding of children’s sensitive data. The Pledge will enhance the trust between families, schools and third party service providers necessary to support the safe and effective use of student information for student, teacher and school success."
- Jules Polonetsky, Executive Director and Co-chair
Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA)“We introduce this Pledge as a clear commitment to safeguard the privacy and security of all student personal information. Current law provides extensive restrictions on the use of student information, and this industry pledge will build on and detail that protection to promote even greater confidence in the appropriate use of student data.”
- Mark Schneiderman, Senior Director of Education Policy
Congressman Polis, Colorado"The potential of using student data to drive effective instruction and personalize education is promising. While there can be tremendous benefits from this data, we must ensure that there are appropriate safeguards to protect student privacy. I am pleased that these companies have taken an important step in making a commitment to parents, educators, and communities. This voluntary pledge can help address parents' legitimate concerns about privacy issues and help keep us on track towards new and exciting educational developments for all students."
- Congressman Jared Polis, House Committee on Education and the Workforce
Foundation for Excellence in Education"The Foundation for Excellence in Education applauds the efforts of the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the Future of Privacy Forum, and the participating companies for their commitment to safeguarding student privacy and bringing additional clarity to this sensitive topic . The Pledge is an important step toward fostering a relationship of trust between educational service providers, schools, parents, and students."
- Andrew Kossack, Deputy Policy Director for Next Generation Reform
iKeepSafe Coalition“The K-12 School Service Provider Pledge to Safeguard Student Privacy is a big step in the right direction to help parents, and educators better understand technology providers' commitments to protect student data."
- Marsali Hancock, President and CEO
Congressman Messer, Indiana"I applaud these companies for their commitment to protecting the privacy of sensitive student information. Their willingness to comply with these standards and not misuse student information shows they care about protecting student privacy while leveraging technology to unleash each child's talents and enhance their ability to learn and succeed." Messer added that the principles "will better inform the debate about what, if any, legislative remedy may be needed to ensure that child privacy is protected and this information is only used for academic purposes."
- Congressman Luke Messer, House Committee on Education and the Workforce
Consortium for School Networking (CoSN)“Educational leaders expect transparency from their service providers, especially as more and more information is stored in digital format and privacy concerns rise. The new K-12 Service Provider Pledge to Safeguard Student Privacy is an important step forward in that movement. Parents, policymakers and educators want clear and consistent privacy policies, and they need their service providers to not only comply with privacy laws, but also to be leaders by publicly outlining how they will protect all student data. Transparency leads to trust.”
- Keith R. Krueger, CEO
National School Boards Association (NSBA)"“This industry-led pledge to honor student data privacy is an important step in the right direction. Those vendors who opt to take the pledge are demonstrating their public commitment to responsible data practices in a manner that will help support school boards’ efforts to safeguard student privacy.”
- Thomas J. Gentzel, Executive Director
Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)"Sound data and information play a critical role as we work to make sure every child is prepared for college and careers. State agencies remain committed to protecting student privacy while using data to improve instruction and raise student achievement. In the world we live in today, teachers, students, and parents are also increasingly using online educational products to support learning and manage classroom data. For these reasons, we welcome the pledge from education service providers and industry leaders to safeguard student privacy." - Chris Minnich, Executive Director
WH Office of Science and Technology PolicyBlog post by Dipayan Ghosh on Promoting Innovation and Protecting Privacy in the Classroom references the Student Privacy Pledge: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/10/09/promoting-innovation-and-protecting-privacy-classroom