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AUSD Online Instructional Tools and Student Privacy

21st century learning tools are key parts of Alameda Unified’s educational program. They provide opportunities for AUSD students to think critically, communicate, collaborate, create content, and otherwise dive deeper into materials and activities outlined in the Common Core State Standards. Some of these apps, websites and electronic database applications store private and confidential student information. AUSD has a legal responsibility to protect student data and privacy per the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). 

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  • Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA):  COPPA states that third party service providers must provide parental notification and obtain parental consent before collecting personal information from children under the age of 13. The federal law permits school districts, such as AUSD, to consent to the collection of personal information on behalf of all of its students, thereby eliminating the need for individual parental consent given directly to the web site operator. COPPA also provides parents or guardians the right to opt out their students under 13 from participation in online services.
  • Federal Educational Records Privacy Act (FERPA): FERPA provides parents or guardians access to their student’s educational records, and some control over whether personal identifiable information from the records is disclosed within electronic systems used at school. 

  • The Student Online Personal Information Protection Act (SOPIPA):  SOPIPA is a comprehensive California law that prohibits all education technology service providers from selling student data, using student data to advertise to students and families, and creating student profiles to be used for non-educational purposes. The law states that it is the responsibility of the education technology service providers to make sure that any student data they collect is secure. Schools and districts also have the right to ask companies to delete student information.


AUSD takes laws and contracts governing student data privacy very seriously. The contracts AUSD enters into with education technology service providers contain language that requires companies to implement security protocols to protect students’ personally identifiable information, and comply with state [per California Education Code 49073.1 (AB1584)] and federal data privacy laws. 


  • California Student Data Privacy Agreement (CSDPA): The CSDPA is a contract that has been reviewed by districts, vendors, PTAC and the California Attorney General. It is intended to be the de facto statewide agreement. When signed by a vendor under the General Offer of Terms, it serves as the agreement for all Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) within California. Alameda Unified School District is an LEA, which means it is covered by current agreements held in the searchable California Student Data Privacy Alliance (part of the Student Data Privacy Consortium).

As mentioned above, COPPA states that third party service providers must give parental notification and obtain parental consent before collecting personal information from children under the age of 13. The <13 Supplemental Online Learning Applications document includes a list of applications used in some AUSD classrooms that specifically require parent notification under COPPA. This list does not include all online subscriptions or applications used in AUSD. District-supported subscriptions of assessment tools, data management, and core content have legal contracts that require data privacy compliance. Applications specific to secondary students and those that do not collect student data or require student accounts may not be listed here because they do not fall under COPPA.