Education Ministry releases conditions for using cameras in classrooms

Installing cameras in classrooms will allow students who are sick, quarantined or in high-risk groups to actively participate in class together with their schoolmates.

Israeli children in second grade (7 - 8 years old) using computers in a class room during a lesson at the "Janusz Korczak" school  in Jerusalem. May 17, 2011. (photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/FLASH90)
Israeli children in second grade (7 - 8 years old) using computers in a class room during a lesson at the "Janusz Korczak" school in Jerusalem. May 17, 2011.
(photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/FLASH90)
The Education Ministry published on Sunday a set of conditions for regulating the issue of installing cameras in classrooms that will allow integrating distance learning with in-class lessons.
Installing cameras in classrooms will allow students who are sick, quarantined or in high-risk groups to actively participate in class together with their schoolmates.
Following extensive work conducted by the Education Ministry and the Justice Ministry's Privacy Protection Authority, the Education Ministry published on Sunday a set of new regulations that will allow the use of cameras in classrooms for the first time, making distance learning more effective, while carefully preserving the basic principle of privacy protection - for both students and teachers.
Until now, installing and using cameras in classrooms for distance learning has not been possible due to legal issues and concerns of breaching the privacy of both students and teachers. The new regulations define strict regulations that allow cameras to be used under certain conditions. According to the regulations, filming the class will either be done by an external computer or by the teacher's phone, while the camera itself will only focus on the teacher, with a strict prohibition of filming the students who are in class.
Teachers will be expected to exercise discretion about filming the class when discussions in class become sensitive or personal information of students may be exposed because of it.

According to the new regulations:

- Filming will only be allowed if the teacher allows it.
- Filming will only be done through a secure online platform approved by the Education Ministry.
- Students and teachers may not film, record or distribute any part of the lesson, and no recordings may be saved.
- In certain cases that require recording the lesson, the teacher will notify the principal, students and parents about it and the recording will be deleted up to one week after being created.
"The Education Ministry continues to adapt to the changing reality," ministry director-general Amit Edri said. "We intend to continue to make the required changes in order to allow Israel's students educational continuity and a sense of certainty that will provide emotional stability and a space for learning, while also creating a flexible and stable working environment for educators."