The only organization dedicated solely to helping state boards advance equity and excellence in public education.

Education Leaders Report   |   October 2016Volume 4, No. 4
School Surveillance: The Consequences for Equity and Privacy


Despite introducing more than 400 bills on student data privacy since 2014, states have yet to address privacy protections for school surveillance or its inequitable effects. NASBE Legal Fellow J. William Tucker and Amelia Vance, NASBE’s director of education data and technology, identify the benefits and potential problems that school surveillance poses, and they suggest six principles to guide state policymakers toward effective, balanced policies.

The desire to keep students safe is among the top reasons why schools use surveillance technologies. But the authors warn that surveillance can be abused and lead to unintended consequences. “Security measures can interfere with the trust and cooperation learning requires by creating barriers among students, teachers, and officials and casting schools in a negative light in students’ eyes,” write Tucker and Vance. As a result, students may feel less nurtured, more uncomfortable in their learning environment, and more fearful of voicing their opinions in class.


School Surveillance: The Consequences for Equity and Privacy




Related Content

Featured Items

Young girl at fountain. Image credit: iStock i

Using Federal Funds to Remediate Lead

This NASBE analysis highlights ways state leaders can leverage the current policy climate and available federal funds to better support school districts in lead remediation so that all children have access to clean drinking water in schools.
Image Credit: iStock i

The Role of Schools in Racial Justice

Authors in this issue argue schools can progress toward educational equity only if, at every challenge, state leaders are willing to make decisions that put the needs of our most vulnerable students first.

Paolo DeMaria Selected as NASBE’s Next President and CEO

DeMaria most recently served as Ohio’s superintendent of public instruction and brings 30 years in state education policymaking, organizational leadership, and strategic planning to NASBE. He becomes NASBE’s president and CEO in January 2022.

Upcoming Events

From the States