Student Data Privacy Law in the State of Louisiana

Student Data Privacy Law in the State of Louisiana

Louisiana’s HB 1076 is a student data privacy and protection law that was enacted in 2014. The law was passed to protect the various forms of personally identifiable information that K-12 students within the state of Louisiana disclose to their teachers and school administrators, in conjunction with the right of all individuals within Louisiana to protect their personal privacy under both the Constitution of Louisiana, as well as the U.S. constitution. With all this being said, Louisiana’s HB 1076 sets forth the guidelines that educators, employees, and school officials must adhere to when collecting, managing, and using personal information concerning students within the state of Louisiana.

What are the responsibilities of educators under the law?

The requirements that educators, school officials, and other relevant personnel have is it relates to protecting the personally identifiable information of students that attend k-12 institutions within the state include but are not limited to:

  • Educators are required to implement privacy compliance standards that can be used to safeguard the personal information of students.
  • Educators are required to draft and implement protocols that can be used to combat the adverse effects of being involved in a data breach, including planning, notification, and remediation procedures.
  • Educators are required to draft and implement policies that can be used to regulate the storage, retention, and disposition of personal information.
  • Educators are required to create guidelines for authorizing access to computer systems that contain personally identifiable information concerning students.
  • Educators are prohibited from using the personal data of students for the purpose of engaging in advertising, marketing, or any other related commercial activities.

What’s more, Louisiana HB 1076 states that certain data elements concerning students enrolled in grades 8-12 may only be collected for the purpose of aiding these students in pursuing postsecondary educational opportunities. These data elements include:

  • Full names.
  • Dates of birth.
  • Social security numbers.
  • Student transcript data.

What other data elements are legally protected under the law?

Furthermore, the following data elements concerning students within the state of Louisiana are also protected from unauthorized use, access, and dissemination:

  • Mother’s maiden name.
  • Biometric records.
  • Medical and health records.
  • Financial information.
  • Religious information.
  • Political information.
  • Family income.
  • Home IP addresses.
  • External digital identities.
  • Email addresses.
  • Home addresses.
  • Student Identification numbers.

What are the penalties for violating Louisiana HB 1076?

The provisions of Louisiana HB 1076 are enforced by the Louisiana State Department of Education. To this point, educators, school administrators, board members, officials, and other relevant employees that are found to be in violation of the law are subject to a number of criminal and civil penalties. These punishments include:

  • A term of imprisonment of up to 6 months for minor offenses.
  • A term of imprisonment of up to 3 years for more serious offenses.
  • A monetary penalty of up to $10,000, as well as a term of imprisonment for up to 3 years for the most serious offenses.

Through the provisions of Louisiana HB 1076, students that attend educational institutions within the state were afforded the legal protections necessary to secure their personal information from unauthorized use. As data privacy continues to be an ever-pressing issue worldwide, legislation such as HB 1076 is more pertinent than ever, as the means and methods that cybercriminals and other bad actors can use to pilfer the personal information of other individuals continue to grow by the day. To this point, safeguarding the personal information that students provide to their teachers when looking to further their educational journeys must be protected at all costs.