privacyCan K-12 students actually get too much tech?

Several parents I know are on the “too much” side, and it’s a fitting topic, as the new school year approaches—especially since some of the most famous names in Silicon Valley have sent their grade schoolers to a low-tech school.

But that isn’t the only issue. How about privacy? When a child uses an app or website requiring a log-in, where does that data go? If a child uses a Chromebook, can Google track which apps they use? Or which work they complete? Is it enough that the information these apps often collect is anonymized and can’t be tracked back to individual students?

As both a teacher and my school’s technology team lead, I have thought about those issues more than some teachers may have.

I have not yet asked a class to use any app which requires individual log-in, but that is primarily because I don’t have the time to set up and oversee 100 log-ins for every kid in the school. We do have a few log-in apps for which we have a school account, such as Dropbox and YouTube, but students do not access those from home.

It is still too early in the tech-in-classrooms story to say where the line is, or should be. But I applaud parents who are smart enough to ask such questions, and I hope that teachers learn to approach these matters with sensitivity and critical thought.

What’s your own thinking on the “how much” and privacy issues? What advice would you have for teachers in my situation?

Image credit and licensing information: Here.


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