NO CHILD LEFT UN-MINED? STUDENT PRIVACY AT RISK IN THE AGE OF BIG DATA

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A Pearson spokesperson said, “We do not use personal student data to sell or market Pearson products or services. The data is entrusted to us as a part of our work with schools and institutions and is guarded by federal and state laws.  From a security perspective, when an education institution or agency entrusts Pearson with personally identifiable student information, we work directly with the organization to ensure the data is protected and our controls are consistent with relevant requirements.”

PowerSchool intakes a large variety of data. Its site touts administrator tools including discipline management and reporting; student and staff demographics; and family management. Brendan O’Grady, VP of Media and Communities for Pearson, says the company has provided ways of allowing educators to track the performance of individual students and groups of students in order to serve them better. “Big data and all of the associated technologies have really improved all of the technologies in the world, the way we travel and communicate and more,” he says. “But we haven’t seen a similar advance in the way we use data in education. There are very legitimate questions about data security and around what works best for schools. But there should be some very positive experiences using big data to give better feedback on what needs to be learned. That’s the biggest opportunity.”

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https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2015/06/27/child-left-un-mined/

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