LA Board of Education members voted to approve a bill that allows school districts to check students’ social media sites while they are being grilled in school classrooms. The proposal is now a part of the new school privacy act. According to the bill, schools can’t disclose the content of a person’s social networking profile without the permission of that person. However, a school can share the information provided by a social networking site with other parties. The LA school board approved the new law on May 16.
Most school districts of LA Board of Education allow parents and/or teachers to check Facebook or other online sites during school hours. They also allow schools to use cell phone spy equipment to track and view text messages sent from cell phones during school hours. Many parents feel this is an invasion of privacy. Some parents don’t want their children to be monitored like this while they’re at school. Others believe it’s a practical way to keep abreast of what their kids are doing online. Read More
Board member of La Board of Education
One school board member, who wishes to remain anonymous, told KABC-TV that she doesn’t think parents should have to give up their right to privacy. She thinks parents who use social networking sites shouldn’t have to check their phones during school hours. She also said she didn’t see why a school district needed to spy on cell phone records. She thought the school district could monitor websites that allowed parents to check on their children’s activities. If a parent wanted to see what their child was doing, they could log into those websites and find out.
However, some parents aren’t so comfortable with that idea of La Board of Education. They believe parents should be able to check on their children when they want to and not have to go through the trouble of getting a new phone, which could be tracked or deleted. In addition, they don’t want their kids being monitored in this manner, either, and would rather the school district get permission before checking a child’s cell phone.
One school board member of LA Board of Education, who wished to remain anonymous, told the news station that people can “spy” on teachers and students, too, but she didn’t think it was fair to do so. She told the news station that the teacher may be fired because she’s being investigated for leaking information. She didn’t think that was fair to the other teachers, either. Another board member of La Board of Education called the investigation into the spying a “waste of time.” She told the station that it was unfortunate that the school board wasted taxpayers’ money on a “frivolous” investigation.
The teachers’ union, which represents most of the school districts from LA Board of Education, is fighting the spying in court. It claims the spying violates the teachers’ right to privacy. The school board passed a resolution in March encouraging its teachers not to talk about the case to anyone except to their direct supervisor or lawyer. So how did this entire drama get started? Check More.
According to the news report, the former board chairwoman received a complaint from a resident that she’d given inappropriate advice during a town hall meeting. The complaint said the board failed to take any action when board members voted to approve a new curriculum that incorporated some lessons from the original program. The town’s school board later voted to have the complaints against the chairwoman dismissed. Then the board adopted a new policy that required its members to support the decisions of the teachers without expressing a view themselves.
According to the report, the new policy encourages “a vigorous and healthy debate.” That is quite a stretch, though, from the idea that people should be spied upon because they might share unsavory thoughts. Perhaps the new La Board of Education members will learn their lessons from the latest flap, which was resolved without any legal trouble for the school board. If nothing else, perhaps the public learns to expect more from their public representatives.
A week after Ref Rodriguez resigned as president of the Los Angeles Board of Education, he helped vote in his successor, an ally and familiar name in city politics who happens to be familiar with the job.
Monica Garcia, 49, the longest-serving current board member, was chosen quickly, without debate. She led the board from July 2007 through June 2013.
The 4-3 vote to put her in charge showed that the majority she is part of, elected with the strong support of charter school backers, still held the reins despite Rodriguez’s legal troubles.