Education Communications & Media

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ESPN v. University of Notre Dame Security Police Department

Earlier this year, ESPN sued the University of Notre Dame Security Police Department, alleging that Notre Dame was withholding police documents involving campus crimes allegedly committed by a number of student-athletes. ...more

Categories 1 and 2 to be Fully Funded for 2015-2016 Funding Year

For the first time in many years, the FCC has announced that it anticipates being able to fund all E-rate funding requests. Last Friday, the FCC issued a Public Notice that states that the estimated demand for Category 1...more

Illinois Crackdown on Companies Targeting People Struggling to Repay Student Loans Continues

On May 4, Illinois AG Lisa Madigan’s office announced that it filed five lawsuits against companies that allegedly scammed borrowers into paying hundreds to thousands of dollars in upfront fees with the false hope that they...more

Parties Weigh in on Cox Petition to Restrict Support for School-owned Broadband Networks

On April 29, several entities filed comments on Cox’s Petition for Reconsideration of the FCC’s December E-rate Order. That Order provided new support for schools and libraries to “self-provision,” or build their own...more

Student Privacy In Online Educational Services

The commercial use of data mined by providers of online educational services, such as Internet homework portals, digital grade books for teachers, and student e-mail programs, continues to be a hot topic on numerous fronts. ...more

FCC Denies E-Rate Appeal in Scorching Order

On April 15, after a multi-year investigation arising from events in 2004-2008, the Chief of the Telecommunications Access Policy Division (TAPD) of the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau issued an Order denying appeals by an...more

PAC Upholds School District’s Decision to Deny FOIA Request for Text Messages

Last month, the Public Access Counselor released a decision on the subject of when text messages can be obtained from a public body through a FOIA request. The decision was non-binding, but nonetheless illustrates that absent...more

What’s the Purpose of the Emergency Purpose Statutory Exemption?

As we’ve noted in the past, there are a number of TPCA petitions for declaratory ruling or requests for interpretation of the TCPA statute or FCC rules on a range of issues relating to the definition of an autodialer, seeking...more

NSBA to OCR: Standard for Addressing Requests for Technology by Students With a Communication Impairment is Off Key

Readers of our FR Alerts may remember my colleague Kendra B. Yoch authored an Alert in 2013 about a set of outlier cases in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, K.M. v. Tustin Unified School District and D.H. v. Poway Unified...more

Department of Education Issues New Guidance Documents Relating to Student Privacy

The past few years have seen exponential growth in the use of technology in the classroom, with applications ranging from the increased availability and use of e-books to the displacement of physical classrooms through...more

FTC updates COPPA FAQs related to educational context

On March 24, 2015, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) updated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to better address the intersection of COPPA regulations and schools....more

“.school” Domains Now Available

The “.school” top-level Internet domain is currently available. Educational institutions with federally registered trademarks can take advantage of the upcoming “Sunrise Period” and secure their “.school” domain as soon as...more

FCC Seeks Comments on Easing TCPA Requirements for Educational Organizations

In a recent announcement, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) asked for public comments on a petition to relax some of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act's (TCPA’s) requirements for educational organizations. If...more

FTC Reminds Schools When They Can Consent to Certain Online Activities By Students Under COPPA

Last week the Federal Trade Commission announced on its blog that it has updated its frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the interplay between schools and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Although...more

Federal student privacy law in flux

In recent months, the White House and members of Congress have called for an overhaul of the forty-year old Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) ((20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), which safeguards the...more

Virginia Serious Game Institute Calls for Applications for Entrepreneurs in Simulation, Modeling and Serious Game Design

Each year, the Virginia Serious Game Institute invites applicants to reside in the business incubator located on the George Mason University - Prince William Campus in Prince William County, Virginia. Each application...more

April 1 Deadline for Posting School Board Member E-Mail Addresses Online Approaches

As we reported in our 2014 Legislative Update, a recent law requires every school district that maintains a traditional website to post on that website a mechanism for members of the public to electronically communicate with...more

Registration with ICANN’s Trademark Clearinghouse a Necessity for Securing a “.college” Domain during the Upcoming Sunrise Period

The “.college” top-level Internet domain will soon be available to institutions of higher education (“IHEs”). IHEs with federally registered trademarks can take advantage of the upcoming “Sunrise Period” and secure their...more

Privacy Tuesday – March 2015: COPPA Refresh

On Friday, the FTC published updates to the COPPA FAQs, the Commission’s compliance guide for businesses and consumers, to address the applicability of COPPA and the Amended COPPA Rule to educational institutions and...more

Generic Top Level Domains Create New Opportunities and New Headaches for Colleges and Universities

For decades, the Internet was limited to a small number of top-level Internet domains, the most common being .com, .org, .net, .edu, and country-specific domains. However, in 2012 the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names...more

FCC Forbears “For Now” From Requiring Universal Service Contribution From Broadband Providers

Section 254(d) of the Act requires providers of “telecommunications services” to contribute to the federal Universal Service Fund (USF), which is used to subsidize telephone and broadband service in high-cost areas, for...more

12 Legal Mistakes to Avoid in Terms of Service for Online Educational Services and Apps

A classroom teacher comes across a promising online educational service or application that she wants to use with her students and comes to you to make sure it’s legally appropriate. The service or app would collect and use...more

Illinois Schools Face Tough Decisions in Combating Cyber-bullying

Illinois, like most states, has a law that addresses school districts’ responsibilities for addressing bullying in schools. With the growing presence of cyber-bullying, as of January 1, 2015, Illinois modified section 27-23.7...more

New California Privacy & Protection Act Proposes Standards for Personal Information Encryption, Bans Sales of Voice-Recording TVs,...

New legislation proposed in California includes a package of privacy-related bills referred to as the California Privacy & Protection Act. The bills proposed include...more

The FTC Did Some Kid-ding Around in 2014

2014 was a busy year for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). The FTC announced something new under COPPA nearly every month, including...more

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