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Is it legal to record a teacher and other students in a technical college classroom in Georgia.

Warner Robins, GA |
Filed under: Education law

This teacher is verbally abusive to a handful of students and changes classroom rules in ways that affect students' grades. From conversations with former students this is apparently her modus operandi.

Attorney Answers 1

Posted

That depends. Are you talking about video recording or audio recording? Is the person doing the recording present and a party to the conversation being recorded? If what you want to do is secretly audio record your own conversations, then you should be fine as far as Georgia is concerned. If you want to "bug" a room that you aren't in, then no.

Georgia, like most states, is a "one party" state for audio recording conversations. That means that any party to a conversation can audio record the conversation without the knowledge of any other party to the conversation.

The same rule does NOT apply to video recordings in private places (such as homes and probably schools). In a case called State v. Madison (2011), the Georgia Court of Appeals held that for video recordings Georgia is an "all-party" state, meaning that all parties video recorded must consent to the recording. So if you want to video record what is going on in a private place, all parties must consent. (Frankly, I think this is a problematic rule, as it basically makes many common recordings illegal. Consider, for example, recording your child's Christmas play at church. The church is a private place, so unless you have the consent of every person in the room and on stage, you're breaking the law.)

So you should be fine to audio-record YOUR conversations with other people in Georgia, but it is criminal eavesdropping to video-record them in a private place without their consent.

But that's just Georgia law. The school may ban recordings of any kind on school property. You need to check that.

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