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Monday, November 4, 2013

NYSED's new scary data dictionary, with 400 elements to be uploaded to inBloom cloud and shared with vendors without parental consent

According to the new NYSED data dictionary, updated just yesterday, among the mandatory elements to be uploaded to inBloom and shared with vendors are approximately 400 data points, for every student, public and charter school and teacher in the state.  They include the following:
  •  Students’ name, addresses, unique ID;
  •   Their parents’ telephone number, email, and nature of their relationship (i.e. whether mother, father, stepfather, foster mother, guardian etc.)
  •  The date the student was born and if not born here, when  entered the US; 
  •  Their family’s economic situation, including whether they participate in public assistance programs and whether they get free lunch;
  •   Their race, their ethnicity, their home languages, and whether they are limited English proficient;   
  •  Their disabilities,  and what services they receive (including  special education services, counseling, etc.) 
  •  What their 504 status is, which can include a wealth of medical and health conditions, such as hearing issues, epilepsy, allergies, etc.  (504 conditions are defined by the feds as any “physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities”  and including "any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological; musculoskeletal; special sense organs; respiratory, including speech organs; cardiovascular; reproductive; digestive; genito-urinary; hemic and lymphatic; skin; and endocrine; or any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities." ) 
  •  When any of these conditions was first identified and when it was removed;
  •  Every day the student was absent, and whether this was due to an out-of-school, or an in school suspension, an unexcused or excused absence, and the reason why; 
  •  Every course they took in every year, how many credits they  accumulated, and what grades they received; 
  •  Any and all assessments they were given, including achievement tests, “attitudinal tests” and “cognitive and perceptual skills tests”;
  • The results of any and all those tests, including their scores and performance levels;   
  •  Any subtests or assessments that relate to specific learning objectives  (or SLOs), and the assessment “response” (ie “a student’s response to a stimulus on a test”, whatever that means) 
  •  The learning standards tested, the content standards and the grade levels for which the learning objective is targeted.   
And on and on and on...

The state claims in the data dictionary that districts “already submit these elements into the Level 2 data warehouse”, with personally identified student names and ID numbers attached.  In fact, data guys tell me that much of this  information has never been shared before with the state.
Moreover the newly updated NYSED FAQ  claims that “With few exceptions, the State does not possess any school district data that was not first provided to the State by school districts by means of a school district relationship with a third party vendor system.”  I doubt the veracity of this statement as well; perhaps SED’s is mistaking data contained in software sold by a vendor with the vendor accessing the  info itself.
The NYSED FAQ also states: “the EngageNY Portal will include date of suspension and whether or not the suspension was assigned in- or out- of school.. No other information related to the incident or the suspension will be included. This basic suspension information is necessary (along with course grades and attendance information) to help identify students who may be at risk of school dropout. “
Yet this seems to contradict the data dictionary which on p. 10 says each attendance “event” must be uploaded, including out of school or in school suspension, and then on pg. 11, the “reason” for this event.  
All in all a very scary amount of personal information for every schoolchild, to be stored on a data cloud and provided to third party vendors without parental or district consent.


jcg said...

Leonie, Have you seen this? Arnie's agitprop.

Sanola Jerry said...

It's good to know that a proper record is maintained in order to analyze the students.

Sanola Jerry

Plos Constructions

Anonymous said...

they are doing this for preschool children in Massachusetts; they have targeted poverty,low income areas in Greater Boston to start getting data. They say if the parent allows the child to have the mobile "device" with APPs the parent has given an electronic signature and therefore they are allowed to collect anything they want. I would be glad to send people the specs for this corporate group that is collecting data in MA with the sanction of the State Department of ed and it is wrong that they are doing this for marketing purposes.

Anonymous said...

Sanola Jerry, I have worked in schools and colleges for over 50 years. The schools don't use all this data, the state doesn't use the data and the problem is they have given the data over to marketing companies who are using the data for marketing purposes to "sell" anything they wish into the homes etc. Perhaps you are one of the marketers and that is why you like the idea. Confidential data should be restricted; we are required to destroy some files in schools that should not be kept in permanent records anywhere in paper or in digital . jean e. sanders responding to you

Anonymous said...

The problem becomes magnified when entered on the web. The schools literally have no control once the info is uploaded and a part of govt record. You can destroy the hard copy all you remains forever retrievable, able to be cloned, indefinitely. Welcome to the 21st century, the age of INFORMATION!

Anonymous said...

Time for a Revolution