Opinion
Ed-Tech Policy Letter to the Editor

The Indelible Student-Data Footprint

August 22, 2017 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

As a counterbalance to “Maryland Dad Wants June 30 to Be ‘National Student Data Deletion Day’” (June 30, 2017), it might be good for Education Week to review and expose all the data that schoolchildren give away online to Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram, as well as how much of that information can becollected and sold by unknown companies. It should be noted that some data-collection items as listed in the article, including browsing history, schoolwork, student-created emails, and other data are stored in multiple places—on vendor sites, in cookies on the individual computer, within the internet-filter systems that are designed to keep the students safe, and by the recipient of electronic communications. As a result, such information is nearly impossible to find and delete. Schools do not “collect” the above information; it is part of the information age.

When parents worry about what their children are giving away online, they will see that schools are not the threat. Google, Facebook, and other social-media platforms are what parents should be aware of. They will also see how hard it is to scrub their child’s digital footprints from the internet. I doubt they would want to pay the schools to do the scrubbing they are hoping for.

Russell Altersitz

Data Analyst

Logan Township School District

Logan Township, N.J.

A version of this article appeared in the August 23, 2017 edition of Education Week as The Indelible Student-Data Footprint

Events

Budget & Finance Webinar Staffing Schools After ESSER: What School and District Leaders Need to Know
Join our newsroom for insights on investing in critical student support positions as pandemic funds expire.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Achievement Webinar
How can districts build sustainable tutoring models before the money runs out?
District leaders, low on funds, must decide: broad support for all or deep interventions for few? Let's discuss maximizing tutoring resources.
Content provided by Varsity Tutors for Schools
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
College & Workforce Readiness Webinar
Roundtable Webinar: Why We Created a Portrait of a Graduate
Hear from three K-12 leaders for insights into their school’s Portrait of a Graduate and learn how to create your own.
Content provided by Otus

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Ed-Tech Policy When Schools Want to Ban Cellphones—But Parents Stand in the Way
Educating parents on the real threats cellphones pose to their children can help allay their concerns about safety.
5 min read
A drowning hand reaching out of a cellphone for help
iStock/Getty
Ed-Tech Policy One School Leader Banned Cellphones, the Other Embraced Them. What Worked?
Two principals describe their dramatically different policies on cellphones and how they are working.
7 min read
An illustration of a wallpaper of mobile phones, some off, some turned over with stickers on the back covers and some missing with just an outline where they once were.
iStock/Getty
Ed-Tech Policy 6 Ways Schools Are Managing Students’ Cellphone Use
Students' cellphone use has been a major source of headaches for teachers and principals.
5 min read
A cell phone sits on a student's desk during a 9th grade honors English class at Bel Air High School in Bel Air, Md., on Jan. 25, 2024.
A cellphone sits on a student's desk during a 9th grade honors English class at Bel Air High School in Bel Air, Md., on Jan. 25, 2024. The policies that districts and schools use to manage the use of cellphones during the school day vary widely.
Jaclyn Borowski/Education Week
Ed-Tech Policy Biden Signs TikTok Ban Into Law. What That Means for Schools
Restricting the platform probably won't alleviate schools’ social media woes.
6 min read
The TikTok app logo appears in Tokyo, on Sept. 28, 2020.
The TikTok app logo appears in Tokyo, on Sept. 28, 2020.
Kiichiro Sato/AP