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

Image Credit: Photo by Allison Shelley/The Verbatim Agency for EDUimages i

State Strategies on Assessments in 2021

This analysis explores the strategies states employed to administer assessments in the 2020-21 school year. It also highlights the opportunities for state boards to learn from and make the best use of data collected from the pandemic school year.

Five Questions to Ask about School Staff Wellness in the Wake of COVID-19

The pandemic increased educator stress and burnout. Here are five questions state board members can ask to engage their state around staff wellness.
Image Credit: iStock i

Reimagining School

Bolstered by American Rescue Plan funds and lessons learned during pandemic-induced school closures, state policymakers have an opportunity to reexamine and reform their education systems.

Upcoming Events

From the States