Florida Might Collect Social Media Data From Students for School Safety

What to Know

  • Information from the Department of Children and Families can be listed in this database.

Social media posts and private student information may be collected by the Florida Department of Education to monitor school safety.

Gov. Ron DeSantis reset an Aug. 1st deadline in his February executive order, in hopes the process would be complete before the start of the school year, after the initial Dec. 1st deadline was not met.

The Florida governor directed the Department of Education to “take all necessary steps to provide a centralized, integrated data repository and data analytics resources to improve access to timely school safety information,” in his executive order.

This data collection effort comes after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting in 2017, where the confessed shooter showed intentions to carry out a school shooting on his social media platforms. 

These potential data sources can include student’s social media accounts, local police, child welfare services, and school districts. Data filtered through this repository will remain confidential if it was initially exempt from public record laws.

Over 30 organizations and advocacy groups don’t approve of the data repository for fear that it might be used to discriminate against students or mislabel student’s posts as threats.

In a letter they sent to DeSantis, they called for the halt of the database. Groups like the ACLU and the National Disability Rights Network have signed the letter.

The current status of the database is unknown, but scheduled to be in effect next month

Contact Us