Your Privacy Matters
TeachersConnect is a network of educators that provides safe, trusted access to mentorship, collaboration, and instructional resources. We take the words “safe” and “trusted” very seriously.
As educators use the network, TeachersConnect examines usage data, looks for patterns in the data, and creates reports that we provide to institutions and companies (collectively, our Partners) who aim to improve their resources and services for teachers. The usage data we share is de-identified; no teacher action will be attributed to a specific teacher in the data reports. TeachersConnect is dedicated to giving teachers easy access to the tools and people they need to succeed as a teacher and grow as an educator. Having a supervisor, employer, professor, or colleague track a teacher’s individual usage without permission is 100% antithetical to that, and we take this promise of individual privacy very seriously.
Our Partners use the de-identified data for a variety of reasons:
- Teacher Prep Programs
- Develop a feedback loop of information to improve curriculum and program delivery
- Help their alumni grow comfortable and strong in the very complex role of “teacher”
- Gather evidence for institutional accreditation
- School Districts
- Target professional development opportunities based on the expressed needs of their teachers
- Identify instructional leaders among the teaching faculty
- Boost teacher retention rates
- Professional Development and Curriculum Providers
- Understand the challenges classroom teachers are facing so they can design products and services that meet their needs
- Justify the revision of current product and service offerings
- Propose brand new product and service offerings
Additionally, Teacher Prep Programs really want their graduates’ email address to find out how they did in preparing them for the classroom and to offer them continuous opportunities to grow as a teacher. As a result, we share with them some basic demographic information that helps them determine whether they’re meeting their goals as a prep program:
- Name and email
- Name of district and school
- Position (e.g teacher, math coach, principal)
- Grade level and subject
This is the only information they’ll receive about you with your identifying information attached.
Likewise, any reports that compare one institution to another will be created without identifying information and only in the spirit of inquiry and programmatic improvement.
Frequently Asked Privacy Questions
I’m an educator or a teaching candidate and I use the network of mentorship and collaboration. Who sees my information and in what form do they see it?
When another member views your profile, they see your first and last name, your profile picture, and all other profile details you’ve entered except your email and password. In addition, your posts appear to other users in your profile and others have the ability to search for your activity on the site (e.g. contributions to a discussion, files you’ve uploaded, public questions you have asked).
Can I change the name that people see for me in the community?
Yes. You can customize this in your user profile.
Will my employer/supervisor/school leader have access to what I share on TeachersConnect?
All comments or files posted on TeachersConnect are attributed to their authors by default. It is possible, based on where the content is posted, that all members of the community can access what you have shared and see your attribution to it. If you want to send a message that is only visible to certain people or post anonymously, we recommend these two options:
- Send a direct message to as many people as you want using the “Messages” area.
- Use the anonymity feature to ask a question.
Do you share my personal information with anyone?
The only personally identifiable information we send is listed below and the only institution that could access it is your Teacher Preparation Program.
- Name and email
- District and school name
- Position (e.g. teacher, math coach, principal)
- Grade level and subject
Aside from that, your personal information is shared with no one.
Can I have access to usage information about me?
We’ve heard that some of you would like a report on your TeachersConnect activity because you’re curious or because you’d like to use it to show a colleague or supervisor how you’re contributing to a powerful community of teachers. We can’t do that yet, but stay tuned because we understand why you’re asking for this.
Will anything I post in TeachersConnect show up in a general Internet search of my name?
No. The content published in the TeachersConnect community is inaccessible to the general public.
Occasionally, we publish a question or an excerpt of a conversation on our social media channels (e.g. On Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, email etc.). When we publish content from TeachersConnect outside of the Community, we remove any personally identifiable information (e.g. name, district, school, etc.) from all conversation participants. We publish this content for two reasons:
- We want to make sure no question goes unanswered. Sometimes this means reaching out to educators outside of the TeachersConnect community.
- Your meaningful questions and thoughtful contributions are powerful symbols of teachers’ serious professionalism and our goal of making sure that all teachers get the skill, confidence, and joy they need to become great and stay great. Publishing the questions and conversations on social media helps convey that message, raise our profile, and strengthen our collective work.
Can I post content from TeachersConnect on social media?
Yes, as long as your intent matches the intent described above–to help a teacher solve a problem or help elevate the profile of teachers or TeachersConnect–and as long as you follow the same rules described above: You are prohibited from publishing questions and discussions from the TeachersConnect community anywhere else (e.g. On Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, email, the wall of your school, etc.) unless you must remove all personally identifiable information (e.g. name, district, school, etc.) from all conversation participants.
Failure to observe these fundamental rules that are designed to protect the privacy of you and your colleagues and to make sure teachers feel safe asking ANY question, may result in the removal of your TeachersConnect account.
What other kinds of information do you collect?
TeachersConnect collects general usage and engagement information about everyone that uses our network.
How do you use the information you collect?
Primarily this information is used internally to understand how the network is used and provide data that informs development initiatives to improve our service to you. Sometimes this information is also used in generalized reports to Teacher Preparation Programs and other partners. Except in the case of the exception noted above, the data is always reported anonymously and in the aggregate.
Who owns the information you collect?
How long do you save information about me?
You should assume that any information we have will be stored indefinitely.
What kind of reports do TeachersConnect Partners receive?
TeachersConnect provides reports that our Partners use for a variety of reasons including programmatic feedback, curriculum review, new-teacher outreach and support, and evidence for accreditation and compliance. The reports include information on what instructional topics tend to come up and when in the school year they arise; what time of day teachers tend to use the network and what kind of devices they’re using; where graduates are teaching and how long they’ve been there; and other evolving trends or patterns.
How do you collect the information for your data reports?
Information is collated from user contributions and usage metrics as members use the features of the TeachersConnect network.
Who sees the data reports about my institution?
When you enter an agreement with TeachersConnect, you determine the people in your department who should have access to the data reports. With the exception of certain TeachersConnect personnel who are involved in data analysis and product development, the people you assign are the only people who have the right to view the reports.
Is information about my institution ever shared with anyone else? If so, in what form will it be shared?
Many of our teacher prep partners are interested in seeing how they compare to their peers. To meet that need, we plan to create comparative reports that show information about other teacher prep programs without naming them or providing enough information to identify them. For example, you might get a report that compares your data with that of the other teacher prep programs in your region or the other program of your size. In such a case, the report would only include information that does not identify the specific prep program, or the information would be aggregated to call out trends and averages.
Who owns the information and the reports?
TeachersConnect. Our agreement allows you to use the reports in a wide variety of ways (e.g. department reports, academic research, accreditation reports, program evaluation), but the information is owned by TeachersConnect.
Can we reference the reports in our academic research and program evaluations?
Yes. And if there are other ways you’re hoping to use the information or if there’s other information you’d like to get, let us know. We want to be helpful.
What happens when we’re no longer a client?
If you choose to end your relationship with TeachersConnect, here’s what happens:
- Your graduates or members will continue to have access to a TeachersConnect account and will still to be able to use the freely available services. They will, however, no longer have a direct line to you (e.g. your logo and announcements will not appear on their page; they may lose access to some of their mentors).
- You no longer have access to the data dashboard for your teacher prep program. All historical data related to your program and recorded on the network is kept by TeachersConnect.
Will any of the information be used for research purposes by TeachersConnect?
It’s possible. We are an organization of educators and former teachers. And we’re geeks. We’re driven to find ways to use the information to help improve the teaching field in general, and when the opportunity exists to do that, we’ll jump on it. Let us know if you’d like to propose a study with us. If we do use the information for research purposes, we will not include any information that identifies a specific teacher prep program without your written consent.
Do you collect information that is not part of the reports to teachers or Partners? Why?
We’re always aiming to develop new initiatives and improve our services to teachers and our partners. In order to do this, we constantly examine how the network is used.
Any time we make a change to the information here, we’ll send you an email, make a note on the TeachersConnect network, and update this document.
What should I do if I have a question that has not been answered above?
Contact us by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.