FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT (FERPA)
The academic, financial, and non-directory information on your student record/account is confidential and protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
FERPA is a federal law that affords parents the right to have access to their children’s education records, the right to seek to have the records amended, and the right to have some control over the disclosure of personally identifiable information from the education records. When a student turns 18 years old, or enters a post-secondary institution at any age, the rights under FERPA transfer from the parents to the student.
FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. Those rights are:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the college receives a request for access. Students should submit to the Registrar written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The Registrar will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the Registrar, the Registrar shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
- The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading. Students may ask the college to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the college official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the college decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the college will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorized disclosure without consent. One exception that permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the college in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position; a person or company with whom the college has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); or a student assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
Under this act, Fletcher assumes that all students are independent. Parents of dependent students must prove such dependence through the presentation of the latest 1040 form filed with the IRS before they may be granted access to any student record of their dependent. The act provides that certain information, designated as directory information, concerning the student may be released by the college unless the student has informed the college that such information should not be released.
Directory information includes the student’s name, mailing address, email address, phone number, date and place of birth, date of enrollment, office in which enrolled, classification, enrollment status (full-time or part-time), major, degree earned, awards, participation in officially recognized activities, and the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended. A student who desires that any or all of his/her directory information not be released must notify Enrollment Services by meeting with the Registrar or the Registrar’s designee to complete an authorization form. Once completed, the request to withhold directory information will remain in effect until revoked by the student.
The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the college to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA can be found below.
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-8520