Increasing cybersecurity awareness and shifting security cultures from reactive to proactive are paramount to bolstering security in K-12 environments, according to a new report.

The "Creating a Common Culture of Action Around Cybersecurity: 2021 National K-12 Education Cybersecurity Report" from Project Tomorrow and iboss identified goals for K-12 cybersecurity leaders and school administrators, as well as the top challenges of implementing cybersecurity initiatives in educational institutions.

The report surveyed a combination of 599 technology leaders and school administrators about their districts' technology use and cybersecurity practices and awareness levels.

Challenges of K-12 cybersecurity

The report identified the following four obstacles to cybersecurity in K-12 environments:

  1. Balancing educational resource access with security
  2. Lack of teacher and administrator cybersecurity awareness
  3. A reactive, rather than proactive, security culture
  4. Lack of understanding regarding cybersecurity risks and cyberattacks

Goals for K-12 security leaders and school administrators

In additions to outlining the challenges of K-12 cybersecurity, the report also found goals for school administrators and cybersecurity leaders to strive towards as they secure their institutions from cyber threats.

  • Create a cybersecurity plan that foregrounds concern, responsibility and accountability.
  • Reassess and identify all technology assets.
  • Increase funding for security readiness, awareness and mitigation.

For more report findings, click here.