Education Week - February 24, 2016 - (Page 12)

BLOGS Google Mines Student Data Outside Education Apps | DIGITAL EDUCATION | The online-services giant Google has acknowledged that it collects and mines for commercial purposes a wide range of personal information on student users who log in through its popular Apps for Education service, then venture to the company's search engine and other products. "This is the first time that Google has admitted that it is in fact spying on children in schools," said Joel Reidenberg, a law professor and privacy expert at Fordham and Princeton universities. "They are appropriating [students'] educational login to be able to track students when they use the [account] for nonApps for Education purposes." Industry representatives, however, argue that Google is doing nothing wrong, that the company should be applauded for its increased transparency, and that it appears to be making a good-faith effort to navigate tricky technical waters faced by many large technology companies that provide commercial and educational products and services. "I think they're within their right to improve their products by using student information," said Brendan Desetti, the director of education policy for the Software & Information Industry Association, a Washington-based trade group. The new information about Google's practices-brought to light in a letter to U.S. Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn.-is the latest in a stream of controversies surrounding the company's handling of student data. In 2014, the company found itself in hot water after Education Week reported that it had acknowledged "scanning and indexing" student email sent using Google Apps for Education, or GAFE. Google officials say the company has since stopped that practice. But in December, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a privacy-advocacy group, filed a complaint with the PRINT AD Federal Trade Commission, alleging in part that the company was using information collected from GAFE users who venture to other Google services in ways that violate the voluntary Student Privacy Pledge. That complaint prompted Franken to demand answers. The company's letter stresses that it is up to schools to grant access to students to venture outside GAFE and to secure parental consent for allowing them to do so. Reidenberg took issue with that. "Number one, school administrators are generally not informed that this is what Google does," he said. "Second, we have very strong public policies trying to get schoolchildren online for educational purposes and Internet research. If administrators follow those [policies], and kids are logged into Apps for Education, this is letting Google spy on them." -BENJAMIN HEROLD Women School Leaders Honored by AASA | DISTRICT DOSSIER | The superintendent of the Tacoma, Wash., public schools and a middle school principal in Florence, Ala., are this year's recipients of the Women in School Leadership award at the annual conference of AASA, the School Superintendents Association. The award "pays tribute to the talent, creativity, and vision of outstanding women educational administrators in the nation's public schools," according to the organization. Carla Santorno, Tacoma's schools chief since 2012, is a career educator who started as a teacher in Denver. She also had previously served as Seattle's chief academic officer. Aimee Rainey, the principal of Florence City Middle School, is Alabama's current middle school principal of the year. She's been a principal for 12 years and has led awardwinning schools. She served as a member of Alabama's Commission of AdvanceED, a nonprofit that reviews K-12 school systems, and as a reviewer on the Educational Leadership Constituent Council, which oversees college and university accreditation. -DENISA R. SUPERVILLE ExpandED Schools Uses Leap Day To Promote Extended Learning | TIME & LEARNING | We all get an extra day this year, on Feb. 29, thanks to that astronomical oddity known as leap year. And the people at ExpandED Schools are challenging us to use it wisely. It's part of a campaign to raise awareness about the learning gap and the importance of extra instructional time. "Owning leap day seemed like a really natural fit to honor what we and so many others around the country are doing in terms of advocating for expanded learning time," said Deb Levy, the group's communications and marketing head. The mission of the New York City-based organization is to close the learning gap between students from lowincome families and their upper- and middle-class peers by increasing access to extended-learning opportunities. Levy said that by the time poor children reach 6th grade, they've incurred a 6,000-hour learning gap. "This is things like summer camp, after-school activities, and weekend trips to cultural institutions." In honor of leap year, ExpandED Schools has put out what's called a Bonus Day Bucket List, which lists ways people can make the most of the extra day, such as registering to vote or learning to knit. "It's just to make people think about what they can do with extra time," Levy said. "We expand the school day, but it's not just so kids can sit at a desk longer and be drilled on math and reading. It's so that they can get exposed to learning experiences that they might not have otherwise. That's the learning gap that we're talking about." ExpandED Schools is partnering with several companies in New York City to sponsor events or classes on leap day, with the proceeds going to support their programs. Students at many ExpandED Schools will also participate by taking a group leap on the day that happens every four years. -MARVA HINTON Go Digital With Formative Assessment And Critical Thinking Increase student success with learning-focused instruction. In this webinar, we'll explore researchbased practices utilizing digital tools to formatively assess and support critical thinking. We'll also address how this integration can help monitor, improve, and maximize instructional opportunities. REGISTRATION IS FREE! Tuesday, March 8, 2016 2 to 3 p.m. ET GoDigital LIVE OR ON-DEMAND 12 | EDUCATION WEEK | February 24, 2016 | GUEST REBECCA STOBAUGH, associate professor, Western Kentucky University MODERATOR KIM BRODY, director of professional development, Mentoring Minds Content provided by

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - February 24, 2016

Education Week - February 24, 2016
ESSA Spotlights Strategy to Reach Diverse Learners
Will the Common Core Step Up Schools’ Focus on Grammar?
Disparities in Test Accommodations Eyed
News in Brief
Report Roundup
S.D. May Restrict Restroom Use For Transgender Students
Conn. Seminars Tackle ‘Religious Illiteracy’ In Classrooms
Seven Studies Comparing Paper and Computer Test Scores
To Offset Poverty, Ed. Groups Urge ‘Whole-Child’ Approach
Research on Deafness Yields Broader Insights
Analysis: Ill. Pension Woes Destabilizing Teaching
Blogs of the Week
Military Eyes Wider Access for Career-Aptitude Test Under ESSA
Scalia’s Death Muddies Fate of Key Cases
Courts Push Lawmakers to the Wall Over K-12 Funding
Blogs of the Week
5 Key Takeaways on Education From White House Candidates
State of the States
Preschool Suspensions Do More Harm Than Good
Personalization Isn’t About Isolation
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
Why Preschool Matters for Student Success

Education Week - February 24, 2016