Three members of Congress—Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., and Rep. George Miller, D-Calif.—are spearheading an effort to require schools to get parents' consent before they accept free computer equipment and internet services from companies. In exchange for such gifts, the legislators argue, schools allow the companies to gather valuable marketing information from students.

"If parents do not want their children to be objects of market research firms while in school,

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