Monday, June 16, 2008

Pedophile fears as student profiles, pictures go in Queensland education database

Just because you can doesn't mean you should.

Parents' groups are up in arms in Australia after it was revealed that an intranet database of all students in Queensland State is being implemented that will be available to all employees of the education system. The database will include a vast range of information:

The intranet database, dubbed OneSchool, will profile each of the state's 480,000 public school students enrolled from Prep to Year 12.

Photographs, personal details, career aspirations, off-campus activities and student performance records are being collected from all 1251 state schools.

Parents fear that it will become a catalog for pedophiles while the Eduation Minister for the State says inclusion will be mandatory.

However Civil Liberties Council vice-president Terry O'Gorman yesterday said parents should be concerned, warning the OneSchool system could put students' privacy at risk.

Mr O'Gorman called for the system to be restricted so principals and teachers could access data only on their own students, with non-teaching staff excluded and no access for home computers or laptops.

"Why should anyone other than the teacher of a particular student and the principal of that school have a right to know what a child's academic performance is, behavioural status is or what their life aims are?" he said.

"It just puzzles me as to how it can have any possible benefit to centralise that information, whereas it has a clear privacy downside."

See: Pedophile fears as student profiles, pictures go on net The Courier-Mail. Via Australian educational authority forcing kids into invasive database - Boing Boing.

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