On October 4, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Education (“DOE”) announced that they will co-host a workshop to explore privacy issues related to education technology. The Ed Tech Workshop, which will take place on December 1, 2017 in Washington, D.C., will examine how the FTC’s Rule implementing the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”) applies to schools and intersects with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”), which is administered by the DOE.
The FTC and the DOE are inviting public comments on a variety of questions, including:
- “Are the joint requirements of FERPA and COPPA sufficiently understood when Ed Tech providers collect personal information from students?
- Under what circumstances is it appropriate for a school to provide consent under COPPA and what is the process for properly obtaining the consent?
- How should requirements concerning notice, deletion, and retention of records be handled and by whom and when?
- COPPA and FERPA both limit the use of personal information collected from students by Ed Tech vendors. What are the appropriate limits on the use of this data?
- How do schools maintain “direct control” over Ed Tech providers when they rely on the School Official Exception to FERPA’s general consent requirement?”
The workshop is aimed at helping provide guidance to schools, Ed Tech providers, parents and other stakeholders around these issues.