Most of America’s public schools have closed during the global coronavirus pandemic and U.S. districts are engaged in an unprecedented shift to online education — at least until the crisis is over.Along with obvious concerns about this vast, rapid shift to digital education — such as whether students have technology and Internet access, and what materials can quickly be put on line — there is another that gets less attention. It’s student data privacy.In 2018, the FBI issued a warning to the public about cyberthreat concerns related to K-12 students. It said that the growth of education technologies in education, along with widespread collection of student data, could have serious privacy and safety implications if compromised or exploited by criminals.The FBI said the types of data that can be collected on students include personally identifiable information; biometric data; academic progress; behavioral, disciplinary and medical information; Web browsing history; students’ geolocation; IP addresses used by students; and classroom activities.This post looks at some of the current issues around student data privacy as millions of students are now trying to learn online at home. This was written by Roxana Marachi, an associate professor of education at San Jose State University, and Lawrence

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