The Privacy Technical Assistance Center (“PTAC”), a resource established by the U.S. Department of Education, recently released a guidance video concerning the use of email in schools and student data privacy. In this short video, the Department briefly explains the protections afforded student personally identifiable information (“PII”) by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) and cautions school employees about using email as a convenient means of transmitting PII.
Student data privacy is an issue being addressed in schools throughout the country, and most specifically in Connecticut where the legislature recently passed Public Act 16-189, An Act Concerning Student Data Privacy. While the PTAC guidance video does not address the nuances of Connecticut’s new law, which became effective on October 1, 2016, it is a helpful reminder to staff about the need to protect the confidentiality of student PII and the potential consequences of sending PII electronically.
For more information about Public Act 16-189, please see our prior postings, Governor Signs Student Data Privacy Law and Briefing on Public Act 16-189: An Act Concerning Student Data Privacy. If you have additional questions about Connecticut’s student data privacy law or FERPA, please contact Benjamin FrazziniKendrick, firstname.lastname@example.org, Gwen Zittoun, email@example.com, or any other member of our School Law Practice Group.