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Updated February 3, 2018

Seesaw: The Learning Journal

  • Intended for children under 13.
  • Collection or use of data is limited to product requirements.
  • Personal information is displayed publicly.
  • Users can interact with trusted users and/or students.
  • Notice is provided in the event of a data breach.
  • Parental consent is required.
Indicates that the product meets all our required privacy safeguards, but more research should be completed prior to use.
Use Responsibly
Full evaluation
61
Overall Scoreinfo-bubble

This overall score represents how the service addressed all our evaluation questions. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive policies.

Overview

Seesaw provides student driven digital portfolios and simple parent communication. In Seesaw, interactions are originated by and largely mediated through the teacher. This hierarchy provides a relative degree of control over who can work in the website, and who can view student work in the website. Parent accounts can be created in the website, and parent access is restricted to their own child's work. Parents have the ability to share their child's work via social media, however, indiscriminate sharing by parents could potentially pose a privacy concern for the child - schools and teachers are encouraged to speak to parents about responsible sharing. Seesaw's terms state they do not create profiles or display advertisements, and all third party service providers that Seesaw works with are contractually required to only use data as directed by Seesaw to support their service. In their terms, Seesaw states they use reasonable security measure to protect student data, including encrypting data in transit. Lastly, teachers and schools signing up for the service should know that they are responsible for obtaining parental consent under COPPA.

Seesaw can be accessed through its website, and is available for download at the iOS App Store, the Google Play Store, and Amazon Appstore. The Privacy Policy and Terms of Use accessed for this evaluation can be found on Seesaw’s website, iOS App Store, the Google Play Store, and Amazon Appstore. Additionally, other policies used for this evaluation include: Privacy Principles, and Copyright & Intellectual Property Policy. This evaluation only considers policies that have been made publicly available prior to an individual using the application or service.

Read the Common Sense standard privacy report (SPR)arrow
The standard privacy report (SPR) displays the most important privacy practices from a product’s polices in a single easy-to-read outline. The report displays an alert when a particular privacy practice is risky, unclear, or not evaluated. This alert indicates more time should be focused on these particular details prior to use.
SafetyPromoting responsible use
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Evaluating safety takes into consideration best practices that protect a user's physical and emotional health. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to safety.
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The terms of Seesaw state they provide control of student journal information to the classroom teacher. Codes to join the service for students are time limited, and expire if not used within a reasonable time, which prevents legacy codes being used for unauthorized access. In addition, the terms state parents have the ability to share journal content on social networks, however, indiscriminate sharing by parents could potentially pose a privacy concern for the child.

PrivacyProtecting collected information
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Evaluating privacy takes into consideration best practices that protect the disclosure of a user's personal information. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to privacy.
57

The terms of Seesaw state that depending on the content of student journals, the Service has the potential to store personal information ranging from non-personal analytics to fairly sensitive personal information. While Seesaw's terms do not list third party service providers in their terms, they do specify that all third parties are contractually restricted to only use data to support Seesaw's service. Seesaw's terms also specify that California residents can make an annual request to see "a list of what personal information about them we’ve disclosed to third parties in the preceding calendar year, as well as the names and addresses of those third parties." Lastly, the terms specify that inactive accounts will be deleted after 12 months, with schools being provided an option to archive the data prior to deletion.

SecurityProtecting against unauthorized access
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Evaluating security takes into consideration best practices that protect the integrity and confidentiality of a user's data. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to security.
55

The terms of Seesaw state that data in transit is encrypted. Additionally, Seesaw's terms specify they review their physical and data security processes, and take steps to control access to their hardware and data centers. However, the terms do not specify whether data at rest is encrypted.

ComplianceFollowing statutory laws and regulations
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Evaluating compliance takes into consideration best practices of companies that collect personal information from children or students and the legal obligations for the privacy and security of that information. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to compliance.
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The terms of Seesaw state they do not display ads on its service, or create marketing profiles on students. Seesaw specifies in their terms that they are acting as a school official, and are under the direct control of a school or district. In addition, teachers signing up for Seesaw should be aware that they are creating a formal agreement with regards to the district's relationship with a vendor, and they should make sure they have the right to create this agreement. Lastly, the terms specify that schools and teachers are responsible for obtaining verifiable parental consent for the collection of personal information.

About Privacy Evaluations

The privacy evaluations have been designed with the help and support of a consortium of schools and districts across the United States. These evaluations are designed to streamline making an informed decision about the potential privacy implications of educational technology used to support teaching and learning.

Our core evaluation criteria are freely available and will remain freely available. People are encouraged to read the questions we use and the information security primer we released. Vendors are encouraged to use our questions and the information security primer to self-evaluate. You can also learn more about our evaluation process.

Please be in touch with any questions or feedback.