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REL Southwest Hosts Louisiana Workshop on Student Data Privacy Laws and Data Use to Guide Culturally Relevant Instruction

Data Use Workshop: wide shot of room
Photo: Cheron Brylski

REL Southwest and the Greater New Orleans Collaborative of Charter Schools hosted a Data Use workshop at Edward Hynes Charter School in New Orleans on August 4–5, 2016. More than 415 educators, including staff from 10 charter schools, attended. Participants included teachers, school leaders, data specialists, and Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) staff as well as members of REL Southwest's Louisiana Charter Schools Research Alliance.

The workshop provided an in-depth look at data use policy, research, and practice, with a focus on student data privacy laws and the use of data to guide culturally relevant instruction. Guidance regarding the collection, use, and sharing of student data has emerged as a high-priority need in Louisiana due to recent changes in the state's laws.

Student data privacy laws: Compliance requirements, policy updates, and new state-sponsored resources

Darlene Morgan Brown, Ph.D., opened the workshop with an overview of the REL Program and the work of the Louisiana Charter Schools Research Alliance. Shannon Lasserre-Cortez, Ph.D., REL Southwest senior researcher, followed with an overview of national and state laws related to the collection, use, and sharing of student data. Next, keynote speaker Kim Nesmith, LDOE data governance and privacy director, provided a closer look at two new Louisiana laws: House Bill 1076, which prohibits public schools from collecting certain student data without permission, and Act 873, which prohibits public schools from releasing student data to entities outside of Louisiana. A panel discussion then provided a platform for attendees to share their concerns and questions about new and existing laws and policies related to data use and student privacy.

Using data to guide culturally responsive instruction

Afternoon sessions offered an in-depth look at how to use data to foster and design culturally relevant instruction. Dereck Rovaris SR., Ph.D., vice provost for diversity at Louisiana State University, explored the intersection between education, culture, and poverty and the implications for teaching and learning. Jan Janz, Ph.D., professor and interim chair of the Department of Curriculum, Instruction & Special Education at the University of New Orleans, closed with a session on using observational data to inform culturally responsive instruction.

Keynote speaker Kim Nesmith, LDOE data governance and privacy director, describes recent changes in Louisiana's data privacy laws.   Alexina Medley speaks during the panel discussion. Seated, left to right, are Patrice Strickland, Beatrice Flair, and Donald Jackson.

Keynote speaker Kim Nesmith, LDOE data governance and privacy director, describes recent changes in Louisiana's data privacy laws.

 

Alexina Medley speaks during the panel discussion. Seated, left to right, are panelists Patrice Strickland, Beatrice Flair, and Donald Jackson.

Darlene Brown, Ph.D, REL Southwest liaison for the Louisiana Charter Schools Research Alliance, facilitates the panel discussion. Seated, left to right, are panelists Kim Nesmith, Alexina Medley, Patrice Strickland, Beatrice Flair, and Donald Jackson.

Darlene Brown, Ph.D, REL Southwest liaison for the Louisiana Charter Schools Research Alliance, facilitates the panel discussion. Seated, left to right, are panelists Kim Nesmith, Alexina Medley, Patrice Strickland, Beatrice Flair, and Donald Jackson.