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Some Schools Surveilling Students Online, Often Without Their Consent

Campuses are using technology to watch students’ email, web history and social media posts in what they say is an effort to protect them

APPLE IPAD SCHOOLS
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Texas schools are rapidly scaling up the use of technology that monitors email, web history, and social media posts of potentially millions of students, often without their knowledge or consent, a Dallas Morning News investigation has found.

Legal and privacy experts have long raised concerns about this technology and questioned its effectiveness in detecting potential threats. Despite those worries, Texas’ schools have spent millions of tax dollars on these services since 2015.

The proliferation of student surveillance has been fueled by nationwide fears about school shootings, suicides, and cyberbullying. Among school districts, no state has more contracts with digital surveillance companies than Texas, according to GovSpend, a company that tracks government spending.

See which districts have used monitoring technology in the rest of the report from our partners at The Dallas Morning News.