Troy, N.Y. – Passport for Good, a web and mobile solution supporting students and school districts across New York state by chronicling community service, career development, and participation in clubs and organizations, has earned the prestigious iKeepSafe certification achieved by proving its technology used by children and in educational settings meets demanding state and federal safety and security standards governing student data privacy.
iKeepSafe (the Internet Keep Safe Coalition) aims to provide a safe digital landscape for children, schools, and families by supporting the protection of student privacy, while advancing learning in a digital culture. The nearly 15-year-old national organization provides data privacy certification to technology companies, educational resources to schools, and information to the community. What makes this the highest standard? iKeepSafe provides a “deep dive” into technology, practices and policies to ensure there are no gaps and will provide ongoing review as the software and laws are updated.
Using Passport for Good, students are able to build a non-academic transcript of their community engagement hours, obtain electronic verification of the hours, and export their non-academic transcript for class/graduation requirements, college applications and scholarships, and employment applications. It also provides student engagement data to help schools meet national education standards and to enhance linkages between service-learning, skill development, and academic and career exploration.
“The privacy and protection of data for students under age 18 has been a top priority in the development of our solution that provides students with a non-academic transcript and gives schools a way to measure success,” said Passport for Good Founder and CEO Gayle Farman. “Schools and parents can now be confident that Passport for Good has that extra ‘stamp of approval,’ has signed the Student Privacy Pledge, and has met the highest standards of compliance with New York education law 2-d, FERPA, COPPA. At Passport for Good, we’re not about tracking students; we’re about measuring impact.”
Dale Breault, director of the Northeastern Regional Information Center (NERIC) at Capital Region BOCES, said, “We are pleased to see that one of our vendor partners, Passport for Good, is taking real steps to protect student information by obtaining iKeepSafe certification. We look forward to continue working with Passport For Good, as well as with all of our vendor partners, to ultimately meet all of the requirements that will be necessary to meet New York State Education regulations that we anticipate will be approved by the NY Board of Regents later this fall.”
The NERIC is a resource for cooperative educational technology services and support working with the BOCES in New York state. Passport for Good has a statewide contract with NYS BOCES as the exclusive vendor in its category.
Passport for Good’s iKeepSafe certification has won praise from school administrators too. Michael P. Nagler, superintendent of Mineola Public Schools in Nassau Country, said, “As usual, Passport for Good is ahead of the field by ensuring it adheres to the highest standards for data privacy and security. The iKeepSafe certification makes it easy for me to implement the app without reservation.”
Kyle Belokopitsky, executive director of the NYS PTA, said, “The work we have done with Passport for Good over the past 11 months has proven the app’s simplicity and positivity and its value to students and school districts alike. We applaud Gayle and her team for going through the rigorous process to earn the iKeepSafe certification. Schools and parents can rest assured that Passport for Good is taking great steps to ensure students’ privacy.”
“We congratulate Passport for Good on demonstrating their commitment to privacy by obtaining the iKeepSafe FERPA and COPPA badges,” said Amber Lindsay, vice president of iKeepSafe. “Schools are increasingly relying on independent, third party reviews of technology companies in order to determine the quality of their privacy and safety practices. They can now feel confident that Passport for Good meets iKeepSafe’s standard of quality in this area.”
In addition to the assessment and subsequent certification, iKeepSafe helps companies remain in compliance in the constantly evolving educational technology regulatory landscape by providing ongoing consultation and support and annual compliance training delivered by nationally data privacy experts.