Privacy Policy

Last Updated: Apr 14, 2023

We value your privacy greatly at PBC Guru and are committed to keeping your information safe. This policy outlines how we use your information to give you the best experience possible. This policy applies to the BookBreak school author talk platform.

Who we are

BookBreak is Partnership of Elementary Schools bringing bestselling author talks to their students. We are service providers that produce and deliver high-quality digital content for K-12 education and beyond. Our mission is to significantly increase access to children's book authors for elementary school communities.

What information do we collection and how do we use it?

Students and Parents

Personal information collected from students and parents

We do not permit students to create user accounts, or collect personally identifiable information from students or parents on the platform. Students and parents do not have user accounts and cannot interact with one another on the BookBreak platform. The product is not intended and does not allow students to interact socially.

Only teachers and staff can create accounts on the BookBreak platform.

BookBreak Usage at home:

Teachers and staff may provide access to BookBreak videos for students to watch at home. Access is provided via a classroom or school code. No personally identifiable information is collected when a classroom or school code is used. The only information collected from classroom or school codes is the number of times they are used. Schools have the option of turning off this feature all together if they prefer. 

Students submitting questions for authors:

Teachers or parents may submit their student’s questions for an author to answer. Questions from students will always be presubmitted and students will never interact with an author directly. Questions may be submitted as a written question or as a video of the student asking their question. All submissions require the permission of a parent or teacher. Only the student’s first name and their school’s name, city and state will be shared during an author event. Submitting questions is completely optional for students. The following information will be collected when a teacher or parent submits a student’s question:

  • Student first and last name
  • Parent/Teacher submitting the question’s first and last name
  • The question they are asking as either text of video
  • The student’s school
  • The student’s city and state

Teachers and Administrators

Information collected during program registration 

If you are a teacher or administrator signing up for an account on our website, we collect the following information:

  • Your first and last name
  • School and/or District affiliation (if applicable)
  • Email address
  • Role at your school
  • Phone number
  • Grade interests and subject interests
  • Survey data and other related data

Additionally, we ask you to set a password to keep your account secure. Non-essential data to the service is optional to provide. Teachers and administrators with schoolwide or district accounts can invite other staff members at the school or district to create a BookBreak account. 

BookBreak also collects information related to participants' activity with their program, including opening emails, clicking on links in emails, and viewing pre-recorded video content. 

BookBreakUsage at Schools

We provide the teachers and administrators of each school or district with access to an administrative portal that allows them to view author talk content and monitor the engagement of their program.

Information we collect when you contact us

When you send us messages through our system or by email, we collect the information you provide, including your message and any contact information you include. We use and retain such information to respond to your request, facilitate support to you in the future and to optimize our support services.

Information collected automatically

Information from a user's browser, such as their IP address, the pages they visited on our platform, and the time and dates of access, is automatically received and recorded on our server logs. This information helps us improve the user experience, maintain sessions, identify location, monitor, analyze, and administer the platform, and customize content to suit individual needs.

 

How we automatically collect information

We use the following tools to collect and track the automatically collected information described above, including:

Use of Cookies and Session Variables

Cookies and session variables are used on BookBreak to allow for certain essential functionality like remaining logged into the site as you go from page to page. Session variables are automatically deleted whenever you close your web browser. Cookies expire after a set period. We use both primary cookies (those created by BookBreak) and third party cookies (those created by one of our trusted third parties).

You can set or amend your web browser controls to accept or refuse cookies. If you choose to reject cookies, you may still use our website though your access to some functionality and areas of our website may be restricted. As the means by which you can refuse cookies through your web browser controls vary from browser-to-browser, you should visit your browser's help menu for more information.

Use of Web Beacons

We employ a software technology called clear giwfs (a.k.a. Web Beacons/Web Bugs), that help us better manage our service by informing us what content is effective. Clear gifs are tiny graphics with a unique identifier, similar in function to cookies, and are used to track the online movements of Web users. In contrast to cookies, which are stored on a user's computer hard drive, clear gifs are embedded invisibly on Web pages or in emails and are about the size of the period at the end of this sentence. We use clear gifs or pixels in our HTML-based emails to let us know which emails recipients have opened. This allows us to gauge the effectiveness of certain communications and the effectiveness of our marketing campaigns. We tie the information gathered by clear gifs in emails to our customers' personal information.

Information Use

We use personal information from teachers and administrators and other information collected from the site to provide valuable experiences for BookBreak users. This includes:

  • Providing the livestream and other program experiences
  • Personalization of content and the user experience
  • Account set up and administration
  • Sending emails to users about service-related matters, such as technical or administrative issues, and providing information about changes to our services or new offerings. These communications are intended for teachers and school districts, and are not sent to students using our site. We may also send important notices related to security and fraud prevention.
  • Carrying out polls and feedback surveys
  • Internal research and development purposes to improve our services
  • Legal obligations
  • Meeting internal audit requirements
  • Creating reporting on the level of program participation for the sponsoring organization

We'll use your email address, as well as your school, role, grade and subject interests, to customize the updates you get about BookBreak via email. You can always opt out of emails that you have already opted in to receive from us by clicking "unsubscribe." 

How we share your information 

We will not sell or rent any of your or your teacher, administrator, or students' information to any third-party for any purpose. We do not track users outside of our website. There is no third-party advertising on bookbreaks.org.

We will not share your information in any way not outlined in this Privacy Policy. Except as noted below, we do not share any Personal Data with third parties for advertising, marketing or other purposes.

We share information that we collect in two circumstances. 

The first group is our service providers, that help us to operate our services and provide a fantastic experience to our users. All of these services, to the best of our understanding, keep personal information secure and private as part of their terms of service. These include:

  • Web Hosting Providers: These organizations store our website and data so users can participate in our programs on the internet.

  • Email Communication Tools: These tools allow us to send emails to participants and track engagement data such as whether an email is opened and/or a link in an email is clicked.

  • Analytics Tools: These tools allow us to track important data that helps improve our service such as how many people visit a specific web page and how often they click on a link.

The second group consists of program-sponsoring organizations. These are the organizations that commission a BookBreak program (i.e., individual schools, school districts ). As an example, for the Montgomery County BookBreak Program,  the sponsoring organization would be Montgomery County. The sponsoring organization for any BookBreak program, where one exists, will be made explicitly clear through the name and description of the program.

BookBreak will share participant contact information (e.g. name, email, address) and participation metrics (e.g. email open rates, online discussion activity) with a program’s sponsoring organization or organizations upon request. Note that personal information is only shared with an individual’s sponsoring organization meaning that if a participant signed up for the Montgomery County BookBreak Program, then we would share their information with Montgomery County but not with any other sponsoring organization.

Sponsoring organizations may use participant data that we share with them to inform participants about the program, track program success metrics, inform participants about other programs, and any other lawful purpose.

Non-personally identifiable information may be provided to third parties for purposes such as analytics or other uses.

If we (or our assets) are acquired by another company, whether by merger, acquisition, bankruptcy, or otherwise, that company would receive all information gathered by BookBreak. In this event, you will be notified via email and/or a prominent notice on our website of any change in ownership, uses of your information, and choices you may have regarding your information.

We reserve the right to use or disclose your information if required by law or if we reasonably believe that use or disclosure is necessary to protect our rights, protect your safety or the safety of others, investigate fraud, or comply with a law, court order, or legal process.

Links to Third-Party Sites

We occasionally link to other websites from our website or embed content such as recorded or livestream videos to provide relevant content to our users. For example, we will sometimes share links to educational websites or general resources to supplement a BookBreak lesson. We are not responsible for the practices of these third-party websites or services that we link to, and they are not covered under this Privacy Policy. These websites have their own privacy policies, and we encourage you to review them.

How we retain and delete your data

Retention of Personal Information

The duration of our retention of the information we collect depends on the type of information. We will either delete or anonymize your information, or securely store and isolate it if deletion or anonymization is not possible.

We retain Personal Data collected in connection with school or district BookBreak accounts only for as long as necessary to provide services to the sponsoring organization, as required by applicable laws or regulations, or per the terms of a contract with a school or district.

For information that you provide to us, we will retain it as long as we have an ongoing legitimate business need to do so. This includes contacting you about other services, complying with our legal obligations, resolving disputes, and enforcing our agreements.

If your jurisdiction requires the deletion program data within a shorter time period, or upon immediate termination of the contract, you are required to delete such data using the Administrator dashboard as mentioned above or contact us for assistance at info@bookbreaks.org or via our website contact form.

In addition, you have the right to request the deletion of this information from our servers before the end of the retention period, as described in "Data Protection Rights" below.

Data Protection Rights

You have the following data protection rights:

  • You can request access, correction, updates or deletion of your personal information.

  • You can object to processing of your personal information, ask us to restrict processing of your personal information or request portability of your personal information.

  • If we have collected and process your personal information with your consent, then you can withdraw your consent at any time. Withdrawing your consent will not affect the lawfulness of any processing we conducted prior to your withdrawal, nor will it affect processing of your personal information conducted in reliance on lawful processing grounds other than consent.

To exercise any of these rights, please contact us at info@bookbreaks.org or via our website contact form. We will respond to your request to change, correct, or delete your information within a reasonable timeframe and notify you of the action we have taken.

PBC Guru has agreed to operate as a school official, as defined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). This means that we operate under the direct control of our school and district customers, and are responsible for handling their student records in accordance with FERPA regulations.

Non-discrimination: We shall not discriminate or otherwise penalize anyone for exercising their rights.

How we protect and secure your information

Each account created on the BookBreak website is protected with a password. Make sure that you keep these passwords a secret at all times to prevent unauthorized access to your account. You are responsible for any activity that occurs while you are logged in to BookBreak, whether or not that access is authorized by you. If you think that someone has gained unauthorized access to your account, please contact us immediately.

At our website, we prioritize the security and protection of Personal Data collected from our users. Our industry-standard security policies and procedures include encryption to safeguard sensitive information transmitted online, firewalls and other security technologies to prevent unauthorized access, and secure password practices using NIST recommendations.

 

We have industry-standard security policies and procedures in place, and take reasonable measures to protect the confidentiality, security and integrity of Personal Data collected on our website. This includes use of encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, firewalls and other security technologies to prevent access to the data from unauthorized parties. All connections between users and BookBreak are secured via encryption communication technology (TLS). All BookBreak passwords are salted and hashed using the practices recommended by NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology). 

 

Our servers are located in a data center in the United States and housed within a secured and monitored environment to prevent unauthorized entry or theft, and are protected by a firewall. Our services are available for access anywhere in the world for participants with the appropriate credentials.

 

Although we strive to maintain the highest level of security standards and continuously update our systems, no system is completely infallible or secure. In the unlikely event that we suspect your Personal Data may have been breached, we will notify you as soon as possible via email.

Legal Basis for Storing and Processing Information (European Economic Area visitors only)

BookBreak relies on the legal basis of consent, contract and legitimate interests to store and process information. Individual participants consent to participate in programs with BookBreak when they sign up. Participants have the right to withdraw their consent from programs and for BookBreak to no longer store or process their information when requested.

BookBreak also has contractual agreements with program sponsoring organizations (see Information Sharing) which outline our relationship with these organizations.

Finally, BookBreak has legitimate interests to store and process data in order to help individual participants and to improve our services.

Using BookBreak Outside the US

If you are using the Services outside the United States, you consent to having your information and data transferred to the United States. If you are in any jurisdiction with laws or regulations governing internet use, including collection, use, and disclosure of personal data, different from those of the United States, you may only use the Services in a manner that is lawful in your jurisdiction. If your use of the Services may be unlawful in your jurisdiction, please do not use them. If your use of the individual accounts may be unlawful in your jurisdiction, please do not use it.

To Unsubscribe From Our Communications

You may unsubscribe from our marketing communications by clicking on the "unsubscribe" link located on the bottom of our e-mails or by sending us email us at info@bookbreaks.org.

Children's Online Privacy Protection Act Compliance

In compliance with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), BookBreak does not collect personally identifiable information from children under 13 without a parent or guardian's consent, or that of a school if applicable. Parents and guardians of children under 13 who use the BookBreak platform have certain rights under COPPA and BookBreak recognizes those rights. At any time, parents/guardians using a home product may request to review the personal information we collected from their child, request that we make no further use of that information or request that we delete it. To exercise your right to delete information, please use the contact information below. Parents/guardians of children using BookBreak through a school account should contact their school to exercise their rights and we will work with the parent/guardian and school together to facilitate those requests.

A child's participation or access to an activity on BookBreak cannot be conditioned on him or her providing more personal information than is reasonably necessary for that activity.

To exercise any of these rights, please contact us at info@bookbreaks.org or via our website contact form.

Age Screening

‚ÄčIf we become aware that we have inadvertently received personal information from a child under the age of thirteen (13) other than in a legally permissible situation, we will delete the information from our records as soon as we discover it.