More Cybersecurity Reportedly Needed in Tennessee Schools

The superintendent of the Bristol, Tenn. City School System reportedly wants school leaders across Tennessee and around the nation to have a comprehensive cybersecurity plan — immediately.

Whether phishing attempts or outright hacks, cyberattacks on schools are reportedly increasing in grades K-12, according to a new article in

The article discussed how Lilly joined two other superintendents to discuss school cybersecurity during a recent national webinar.

The three superintendents, the website went on to say, offered five reasons to make cybersecurity a priority.

The first reason must do with liability, according to

“Districts and school leaders can be held liable for network breaches. Individual superintendents and principals can even be sued. School management needs to take reasonable steps to ensure protection beyond data sharing policies,” the website reported.

“Lilly explained that his schools, for instance, have frequent administrative access audits to ensure they can’t see information they shouldn’t, like Social Security numbers.”

The other two superintendents on the webinar were Steve Bradshaw, who is a school superintendent in Montana, and Juan Cabrera, a school superintendent in El Paso, according to the website.

“Bradshaw recommended all districts hold cybersecurity insurance so that the school can take care of problems as they arise,” the website reported.

The three superintendents also reportedly said school system officials need to focus on cybersecurity for legal reasons for professional reputation, for teaching and learning, and for the sake of students’ digital records.

“Not all attacks are about stealing data. Some have focused on changing information, which can impact college and employment applications,” according to the website.

School records, the website went on to say, contain health information on all students, employees, and any medical needs shared with the nurse or school officials.

“Stories about data hacks stay in the news for many cycles. This can harm the reputation of the school and its leaders,” the website said.

“All presenters have heard of school officials losing their jobs from data breaches. Don’t let it be you.”

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  1. The K-12 Cyber Incident Map has documented hundreds of recent cybsecurity incidents targeting public elementary and secondary schools. To learn more about the issue and the urgent need for action, please visit: