Skip Navigation
small NCES header image
The Forum Guide to Data Ethics
NCES 2010-801
March 2010

The Integrity Canons

School districts use data in countless ways, and datarelated integrity issues arise quite frequently. For example, in just one grading period, a school district dealt with several concerns related to professional integrity:

  • A parent who had requested that his child's directory information not be disclosed by the school received a commercial advertisement that clearly referenced data that had been collected as a part of the school registration process.
  • A school guidance counselor used a few isolated pieces of information to make broad generalizations about a student's educational and career potential.
  • A well-respected charitable organization requested access to confidential data to help identify students who might benefit from its help and services.
  • A local school received a high profile national award based on erroneous data
    and faulty analysis.
  • A school administrator wanted to manipulate data in a legal but misleading manner to help improve the district's public image.
How should staff respond to these situations?
What principles should guide this decisionmaking?

Would you like to help us improve our products and website by taking a short survey?

YES, I would like to take the survey


No Thanks

The survey consists of a few short questions and takes less than one minute to complete.