The Student Data Privacy Act presents a challenging new change to the way we use technology in our schools. It may seem as though these safety and privacy requirements are working against your efforts to move forward with 21st century teaching and learning. The Canton IT Department empathizes with your sentiments about this. The goal of this State and Federal law is simply to ensure that the data students provide to the internet is not misused. Many sites collect unnecessary and easily exploitable data. Below is the process teachers should use when evaluating new services or applications for student use.
The Student Data Privacy Process "How can you get an application approved for use?"
Teachers who want to request new applications should first check the following three lists to determine if the Application/Service has already been reviewed
- "Approved for Use" - Applications / Services that have signed Student Data Privacy agreements and can be used
- "Under Review" - Applications / Services that are being reviewed, are waiting for a contract to be signed, or need additional teacher data to proceed
- "COVID-19 Exceptions" - Applications / Services that have been approved for use during the COVID-19 Distance Learning initiative.
- "Cannot be Used" - Applications / Services that have refused to sign Student Data Privacy Contracts and cannot be used
If the service is not on these lists, please fill out this form to request evaluation of an online service or application (please note, this is not an internet filter unblock request).
The application will be added to our Under Review list. We may request a short conversation to clarify the data submitted in the form. The turn around for each application is generally dependent on the accuracy of the data provided (specifically the contact email address) and the willingness of the company to sign our contract.
Exceptions to the Rule
There is an option that can be employed if a company does not sign a Student Data Privacy agreement, but the application or service is deemed absolutely necessary. However, this exception must be used sparingly and in extreme situations such as a single student needing access to a piece of assistive technology, part of a 504, or IEP. For each student, the requirements for making an exception are:
- Parent or Guardian must sign a specific consent form for the application
- Teacher must make every reasonable attempt to find an alternative to the service or application
- The purpose of the service or application, and its unique attributes must be listed on the Parental Consent form
- The application must be reported annually to the State of Connecticut Department of Education along with the its unique attributes