Process for Application Request and Review

Applications (Apps) are requested either by individual educators or through the curriculum adoption process using the Shawnee Mission School District's Web HelpDesk online support system. Once submitted for review, building principals have the first step of approval at the building level before a request moves to a district level committee. The App Review Committee reviews requests while applying the following considerations:

● Curriculum and Instruction:
Does the app support an instructional need consistent with district goals/initiatives. What does the app do that is not already available in other applications?
What curricular objectives does the app support?

● Data Privacy:
Does the app require students to create an account?
What types of data (if any) does the vendor collect?  
Can the classroom teacher or the district manage and restrict student accounts?
What information is required for student accounts, and what are the privacy assurances from the vendor?

● Age Appropriateness:
Is the App developmentally appropriate for the age/grade level?

● Advertising:
The committee prefers that apps have zero advertising. However, this is not always possible with free education apps. If advertising exists, it must be age appropriate. 
Does the advertisement cover a minimal part of the screen?
If a student clicks on an ad, does it take the student away from learning content?

● Other Considerations:
A review of the terms of service language is completed.  Vendors may change their terms of service without notice.  Vendors may also change their advertising tactics without notice. 

If the App Review Committee receives feedback or a report indicating that the benefits of an approved app have changed, the Curriculum and Instruction or Information and Communication Technology team may choose to revoke these apps and render them inaccessible to students.  Reports of app concern may be shared with a teacher or building administrator to initiate a review by the App Review Committee.  The Committee makes every attempt to review approved apps on an annual basis.

Flow Chart for App Review


COPPA Information Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)As part of Shawnee Mission School District's effort to provide students with effective and personalized learning opportunities, a variety of web-based sites and apps that are operated by third party services will be integrated into curriculum and learning.

In order for our students to use these tools, basic student information must be provided to the third parties. Under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), website and application operators must notify parents and obtain verifiable parental consent before collecting this information from children under 13 years of age. In addition, under this law, schools are permitted to consent to the collection of this information on behalf of its students. This eliminates the need for individual parental consent given directly to each website or app operator.

For additional information regarding COPPA, please visit Protecting your Child's Privacy Online.  

A list of the possible applications to be used in our classrooms, with links to their privacy policies can be obtained by clicking on the following link. Approved iOS and OS applications.