Fulton Science Academy Middle School in Alpharetta
ALPHARETTA, Ga. -- After complaints from several parents, the Fulton County School System admitted on Wednesday that it made a big mistake posting the names of dozens of students on the internet.
Now those names are all over the worldwide web thanks to a controversy over their school.
They are current and former students at the Fulton Science Academy Charter Middle School in Alpharetta.
Fulton County Schools refused to give the school a ten year charter extension this past winter after concerns about how it was being run and how millions of taxpayer dollars were being spent.
Last week the school system released an outside audit which it claimed confirmed those concerns.
The problem is, possibly as many as sixty student names were included in the audit's supporting documents about overseas trips.
Now their parents are angry and frightened.
Some believe the school system may have violated federal privacy laws.
"I feel violated, but for them I feel incensed," parent Debra Harper said about her two children being included.
"There's a reason for the privacy act and, you know, it's to protect them and clearly they're not being protected," she told 11 Alive News.
"I'm just highly concerned that their personal information is out there and there's somehow a negative connotation that they've done something wrong," said parent Janet Turco.
"The school that's supposed to educate and protect my children releasing this information for reasons which, you know, seem odd, bizarre, it just doesn't make any sense to me," said parent Paul Tardif.
Fulton County Schools released a statement on Wednesday admitting they had made a mistake and promising to correct it.
"FCSS regrets that student information may have been released in a schedule attached to the FSAMS report. When it was discovered that information containing student names was inadvertently included, FCS took immediate action to rectify the situation. The version of the report containing student names is no longer available online in any format. Because student safety and privacy is such an important issue, we will immediately be reviewing our public records request process to ensure this doesn't happen again."
But that's still not good enough for many parents.
They fear it's like trying to put toothpaste back in the tube since the audit was linked to numerous internet news stories including some overseas.
Some parents say they have already filed formal complaints with the U.S. Department of Education, as well as contacting the Georgia Department of Education and Governor Nathan Deal's office.
Meanwhile, the highly academically regarded Fulton Science Academy Middle School is now trying to continue operating as a private school.