In operation just three months, the database already holds files on millions of children identified by name, address and sometimes social security number. Learning disabilities are documented, test scores recorded, attendance noted. In some cases, the database tracks student hobbies, career goals, attitudes toward school - even homework completion.
Local education officials retain legal control over their students' information. But federal law allows them to share files in their portion of the database with private companies selling educational products and services.
Entrepreneurs can't wait.
The database is a joint project of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which provided most of the funding, the Carnegie Corporation of New York and school officials from several states. Amplify Education, a division of Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, built the infrastructure over the past 18 months. When it was ready, the Gates Foundation turned the database over to a newly created nonprofit, inBloom Inc, which will run it.
States and school districts can choose whether they want to input their student records into the system; the service is free for now, though inBloom officials say they will likely start to charge fees in 2015. So far, seven states - Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Massachusetts - have committed to enter data from select school districts. Louisiana and New York will be entering nearly all student records statewide.
The Texas House on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly to loosen high school graduation requirements and significantly reduce high-stakes testing after a daylong debate in which legislators grappled with how academic rigor and flexibility can co-exist.
House Bill 5 won preliminary passage on a 145-2 vote. State Rep. Mark Strama, D-Austin, who unsuccessfully pushed an amendment aimed at steering more students toward college, and state Rep. Naomi Gonzalez, D-El Paso, were the only nays.
The legislation reduces from 15 to five the number of end-of-course exams needed for graduation from high school and amounts to an about-face for Texas, which has been at the forefront of the standardized testing movement. The required tests would be algebra, biology, U.S. history and 10th-grade reading and writing.
March 26, 2013 at 1:30 pm
The state has already agreed to share confidential student and teacher data with Wireless Generation, to be put on a “cloud” managed by amazon.com.
At this point, the only question is whether our legislatures will act to block the release of student data without the permission of parents.
I don’t know how to stop the release of teacher data
According to KnoxNews, Tennessee legislators are attempting to pass legislation to cut the welfare benefits of parents with children who don't meet attendance and performance requirements. The bill, SB 132, is sponsored by Sen. Stacey Campfield, R-Knoxville, and Rep. Vance Dennis, R-Savannah, and has passed committees in both the House and Senate, and now heads to another House committee, and to the Senate floor for vote.
The state Department of Human Services originally opposed the bill, but then worked with Campfield and Knox to add exceptions for kids with disabilities (both physical and learning) or if parents take school-approved steps to attempt to improve the child's progress.
You have an undiagnosed learning disability and you failed the tests? No dinner for you! You miss school because you have no way of getting there? Good job, selfish, now nobody in your family gets to eat. You didn't get your homework done because you're so ******* hungry and that's all you can think about? CRY ME A RIVER.
And, of course, this only targets already financially struggling families. If you're rich and your kid is doing shitty in school — who cares? You're rich!