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    Hackers publish public Fairfax County school district’s stolen data online | Govt-and-politics

    FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) — Computer hackers who obtained information about a Virginia public school district’s students and employees have posted stolen data online, school officials said Friday in an email to parents and staff. The Fairfax County Public Schools didn’t specify the nature or volume of the data that was stolen in the ransomware attack last month. Hackers use ransomware software to steal data and threaten to publish or block access to it unless a target pays a ransom. The Washington Post reports that Schools Superintendent Scott Brabrand’s email on Friday said the criminal cyber organization known as the Maze group had claimed responsibility for the attack and posted…

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    Children’s online school privacy protection at risk: study

    The privacy protection, and by extension physical safety, of school-age B.C. children is being jeopardized by a patchwork of protections in the school system, says a report released Sept. 17. The warning comes from the BC Freedom of Information and Privacy Association (FIPA) in the report, Troubling clouds: Gaps affecting privacy protection in British Columbia’s K-12 education system. The report said in its embrace of digital tools and smart technology to help students “thrive in an increasingly digital world,” the provincial government is engaging in a form of contracting out work through which students’ information becomes susceptible to use by bad actors. “The government is setting the system up for…

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    Will Florida continue online classes next semester? Parents seek answers.

    When Maria Balestriere enrolled her two children in Pasco County’s mySchool Online, she did so to ensure consistency. “Our worry was, are these kids going to be in school for two weeks and then all of a sudden you’re quarantined?” said Balestriere, who lives in Wesley Chapel. “I really didn’t want the back and forth.” Before long, she found the arrangement worked “really, really well.” Her daughter in particular is able to learn and focus with a teacher she likes. Neither of her children — one in fourth grade, the other in seventh — is clamoring to be in a regular classroom. But Balestriere recognizes that a return to campus…

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    COVID-19 ends snow days? Schools use online class to cancel them

    Years before the coronavirus hit, two rural school districts developed plans to put learning online. They were ready for a snowstorm and instead found themselves prepared for a pandemic.  For the Bancroft-Rosalie Community Schools in northeast Nebraska, the move online took four years, gradually incorporating software into daily lesson plans to use during inclement weather or in place of hiring substitutes when a teacher was absent. The district used digital learning to abolish snow days – a trend that has expanded to New York City and could work its way across the country.  Taking classes online full-time happened in a way no one could have anticipated. On March 11, after a…

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    Online-only tours make anxious parents’ school choice harder | Schools

    Parents are suffering “sleepless nights” trying to choose secondary schools for their children without setting foot in buildings or meeting teachers face to face. Following new government guidance that now recommends schools consider alternatives to face-to-face open events, many schools are only offering online talks and virtual school tours to parents, who must get their school place applications in by the end of this month. In a bid to woo parents and simultaneously outshine other local schools, some state schools have spent more than £5,000 on professionally made promotional videos this term. These often include drone footage of their grounds and story-boarded, scripted interactions between pupils. Others, with smaller budgets,…

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    Dufferin-Peel Catholic school board to merge in-person and online classes as more students switch to remote learning

    The Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board says it will also be scrapping its virtual school and merging it with the in-person classes after a York Region Catholic school board announced that it is adopting a hybrid model to cope with staffing problems. In a letter to parents on Thursday, DPCDSB Director of Education Marianne Mazzorato said face-to-face students will now be in the same class as those learning at home. “The separate virtual school will no longer exist, as all students will rejoin their peers at their home school. Students who are currently in the virtual school will continue to learn remotely but aligned to their home school,” Mazzorato said.…

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    Peel District School Board delays start of online school after thousands of students switched to virtual learning

    Peel District School Board is delaying the start of its online school after thousands of students switched from in-person classes to virtual learning. In a letter sent to families on Saturday, the school board said over 64,000 students are now enrolled in its online school, an increase of 10,000 in the last week. “Due to this recent increase in online enrolment, we require additional time to staff online classes and reconfigure timetables to ensure an equitable and successful start for all staff and students online,” the letter reads. Students enrolled in the PDSB Online School were supposed to connect with their teachers on Sept. 11, and classes were scheduled to…

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