Online Tools Used in the Weston Schools

Educators in our schools use a variety of resources for instruction.  Some of these include online web tools used on computers. We are cognizant that the use of these online tools may require accounts to be created, or even if no account is required, that data is being generated about the interaction by those online tools.  To help us protect the online privacy of students, we joined the Student Data Privacy Consortium (SDPC), a national resource that has set up standards and guidelines for educational software products that align with federal laws. With the help and resources of this consortium, we are vetting all of the educational online resources, both paid resources, and free online tools, to ensure they comply with SDPC standards.

Weston is using the tools posted to this Weston Online Resources site.  The specific online agreements are list on this SDPC Weston Resources Page page within the national SDPC website.

Student Web Content Filtering

Student Chromebooks and iPads that are provided to students have web content filters installed. These filters block sites that are generally considered inappropriate by age level. The filters are not perfect, and parents should always be aware of what content their children may be consuming.  

The filtering software application is called Deledao.  This product uses artificial intelligence as well as traditionally categorized URLs to do a better job of filtering content.  

The filters also scan email and documents for signs of bullying and suicidal ideation. Any content flagged is routed to a school administrator and/or counselor for evaluation. None of these functions are perfect, and they only cover school-operated Google account content. Parents can opt their students out of this specific wellness function upon request (see FAQ below)..  

Why are you using a bullying and suicidal ideation indicator tool now?

This change of products gave us a good opportunity to add this functionality without adding an additional separate system.  We also feel it is prudent to have better tools that may give us a better pulse on students that may be struggling or being bullied. 

What happens if the content from my child is flagged?

A brief excerpt of the flagged content is emailed to people designated by the principal within the school.  These individuals assess if this content is of any concern.  (Our experience so far suggests that most of the contents flagged are false positives).  The AI still flags keywords used in jest, (i.e. .. you’re killin’ me here!..  …I was so embarrassed, I could have just died…, etc.) but it should get better over time.  Any content assessed as needing follow-up will be handled by the most appropriate professional based on the student and the factors involved.

When would I get notified by the school if flagged about content regarding my student?

In the same manner as anything else that happens in school or on a school technology platform, the parent would be informed as needed and warranted by school personnel.  If the professionals in the school feel the issue rises to a level that you should be notified, you will be notified.

The filter tool used is cloud-based, what happens to that data?

Deledao Education enables us, the local school, to use the data to inform our decision and practices.  Deledao complies with all federal laws (COPPA), the EEA (European Economic Area), and has a signed Student Data Privacy Agreement with the Weston Public Schools which is based on the national Student Data Privacy Consortium (SDPC) standards.  The SDPC standards go well beyond the slow-to-move federal laws to provide enhanced protection of student data. 

The use of technology in Weston Public Schools is governed by federal laws including COPPA, FERPA, and CIPA.  More information about these Protection Acts are linked here.