Fourth Amendment Applies to Public School Electronic Search of Home’s Bedroom for the First Time

In Ogletree v. Cleveland State University a judge ruled this week that the use of electronic  room scans conducted using software from Respondus and Honorlock can potentially violate the Fourth Amendment. As state institutions, the software constitutes a government search. CSU does not require or even recommend room scans, but the products automatically include this feature as part of the remote proctoring system. As a result, an unauthorized use of such software has for the first time been recognized as an intrusive government search.

See more at the Chronicle of Higher Ed.

This is not the first time legal issues have emerged from remote classroom tools. Students have been punished for the items in their bedrooms, including bb-guns that violate school no-weapon policies and Confederate flags that violate hate speech codes. As institutions move away from crisis mode and begin to standardize these procedures, much more attention will need to be paid to the legal rights of students in the process of managing remote environments.