Education departments, textbook publishers now spying on students' social media accountsOne of the globe’s biggest publishers of textbooks and other educational materials, which also designed the standardized tests for the new Common Core curriculum, has taken to monitoring the social media accounts of students to see if they discuss their exams. As reported by Fox News, Britain-based publisher Pearson, whose U.S. headquarters is located in New Jersey, has the contract for developing the PARCC (Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) standardized tests; PARCC is one of two entities that developed Common Core. News that Pearson was involved in monitoring student social media posts for exam comments was first reported by Bob Braun, a former education reporter for The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J., on his blog. In recent days Braun put a copy of a letter on his blog that was sent to the staff at Watchung Hills Regional High School District in the town of Warren from Superintendent Elizabeth Jewett regarding the social media monitoring: “…my testing coordinator received a call from the NJDOE [New Jersey Department of Education] that Pearson had initiated a Priority 1 Alert for an item breach within our school,” read the letter from Jewett. ” …they suggested the student took a picture of a test item and tweeted it.” MORE