Shelby County Schools, charter school clash over student data

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A new Tennessee law requiring public school districts to provide student data to charter schools faces its first tests with pushback from districts.

The Tennessean reports Shelby County Schools said in a letter Thursday that the district has denied charter operator Green Dot Public Schools’ request for contact information, citing federal student privacy laws.

The letter said board policy limits the release of information for the purpose of marketing under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.

In July, the General Assembly passed a law saying districts must provide the information within 30 days of a request.

Charters use the data for recruitment and marketing purposes but may not share the information with outside parties.

The outcome of the dispute could affect other Tennessee districts, who have received similar requests.

Green Dot has five schools in Memphis: Kirby Middle School, Wooddale Middle School, Fairley High School, Bluff City High School and Hillcrest High School.

They also operate schools in California and Washington state.