Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law (20 U.S.C. 1232g) that protects the privacy of a student's education records. A student is someone that has been accepted, matriculated, and enrolled (or a former student of) Elizabethtown College. An "eligible student" under FERPA is a student who is 18 years of age or older, or who attends a post secondary institution.
The right to review and inspect his or her own education records.
An eligible student has the right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days after Elizabethtown College receives a request for access. The Office of Registration and Records is the custodian of your academic record. A student should submit to the Registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The Office of Registration and Records will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the requested records are not maintained by the Office of Registration and Records, you will be advised of the appropriate records custodian to whom the request should be addressed.
The right to request an amendment of the education record.
An eligible student has the right to seek amendment of the student's education records that the student believes to be inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise a violation of the student's privacy rights under FERPA.
- A student who wishes to ask the college to amend the record should write the records custodian responsible for the record, clearly identifying the part of the record the student wishes to be amended, and specify why it should be changed.
- The college will, within a reasonable time after receipt of the request, determine whether to amend the record as requested. The student will receive written notification of the research outcomes in writing.
- If the college reaches a decision not to amend the record as requested, the college will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student's right to a formal hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information will be provided to the student when notification of the right to a hearing is conveyed to the student.
The right to provide written consent before personally identifiable information is disclosed, except when FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
An eligible student has the right to provide written consent before the college discloses personally identifiable information (PPI) from the student's education records, except to the extent FERPA authorizes disclosure without student consent. The college may disclose education records without a student's prior consent when authorized by FERPA, including to "school officials" whom the college has determined to have "legitimate education interest".
The right to file a complaint.
An eligible student has the right to file a complaint with the Family Policy Compliance Office concerning alleged failures by Elizabethtown College to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an educational record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. A school official can be a person: (1) employed by the college in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including law enforcement and health staff personnel); (2) members of the Board of Trustees; (3) individuals employed by or under contract to the college to perform a specific task, such as, an agent, an attorney, an auditor, or an outsourced service provider; and (4) a student representative on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or a student assisting another school official in performing assigned tasks.
Legitimate Educational Interest
An individual with a legitimate educational interest, or "need to know", serves in a capacity that requires the ability to review student educational records for the purpose of performing assigned institutional research, or educational or administrative function of the individual's job description.
Institutions may disclose a student's directory information without the student's consent, and without violating FERPA, if the student has not restricted personal information.
Directory Information includes:
- enrollment status (e.g., undergraduate or graduate; part-time or full-time)
- campus box
- campus email address
- local and home address
- local and home telephone numbers (including cell phone numbers)
- date and place of birth
- dates of attendance
- class, field of study, degree
- date of graduation
- participation in officially recognized sports and activities (including height and weight information of the athlete)
- most recently attended institution
Request to Restrict Directory Information
Students may request to restrict the release of directory information (Request for Non-Disclosure of Directory Information) except to school officials with legitimate educational interest, which was defined above. A student can complete and submit, a signed and dated request to the Office of Registration and Records, Zug Memorial Hall, Room 210. Should the student graduate, or elect to withdraw from the college, this restriction will remain in place until revoked by the student.
Non-disclosure and Graduation
If a student has exercised the right to non-disclosure of directory information, the National Student Clearinghouse and the college are prohibited from disclosing degree completion to prospective employers. Students are reminded that they can amend their FERPA rights at anytime by submitting any of the above forms to the Office of Registration and Records.
When does FERPA permit disclosure of personally identifiable information (PII) without student consent?
FEPRA permits the disclosure of PII for student's education records, without consent of the student, if the disclosure meets certain conditions found in §99.31 of the FERPA regulations. Exceptions include ….
The institution may disclose PII from the educational records without obtaining prior written consent of an eligible student:
- To other school officials whom the college has determined to have legitimate educational interests. These include contractors, consultants, volunteers, or other parties to whom the college has outsourced institutional services or functions, provided that certain conditions are met. [§99.31(a)(1)]
- To officials of another college or college where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer, subject to the requirements of §99.34. [§99.31(a)(2)]
- To authorized representatives of the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or State and local educational authorities, such as a State postsecondary authority that is responsible for supervising the college’s State-supported education programs. Disclosures under this provision may be made, subject to the requirements of §99.35, in connection with an audit or evaluation of Federal- or State-supported education programs, or for the enforcement of or compliance with Federal legal requirements that relate to those programs. These entities may make further disclosures of PII to outside entities that are designated by them as their authorized representatives to conduct any audit, evaluation, or enforcement or compliance activity on their behalf. [§§99.31(a)(3) and 99.35]
- In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received, if the information is necessary to determine eligibility for the aid, determine the amount of the aid, determine the conditions of the aid, or enforce the terms and conditions of the aid. [§99.31(a)(4)]
- To certain State and local officials or authorities when authorized by State statute in certain cases. [§99.31(a)(5)]
- To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, the college, in order to: (a) develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; (b) administer student aid programs; or (c) improve instruction. [§99.31(a)(6)]
- To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions. [§99.31(a)(7)]
- To parents of an eligible student if the student is a dependent for IRS tax purposes. [§99.31(a)(8)]
- To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena. [§99.31(a)(9)]
- To appropriate officials in connection with a health or safety emergency, subject to §99.36. [§99.31(a)(10)]
- When it is information the college has designated as “directory information” under §99.37. [§99.31(a)(11)]
- To a victim of an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense, subject to the requirements of §99.39. The disclosure may only include the final results of the disciplinary proceeding with respect to that alleged crime or offense, regardless of the finding. [§99.31(a)(13)]
- To the general public, the final results of a disciplinary proceeding, subject to the requirements of §99.39, if the college determines the student is an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense and the student has committed a violation of the college’s rules or policies with respect to the allegation made against him or her. [§99.31(a)(14)]
- To parents of a student regarding the student’s violation of any Federal, State, or local law, or of any rule or policy of the college, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance if the college determines the student committed a disciplinary violation and the student is under the age of 21. [§99.31(a)(15)]
- The disclosure concerns sex offenders and other individuals required to register under section 17010 of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.
FERPA for Families
FERPA for Instructional Staff, Faculty and Advisors
FERPA reference for Instructional Staff, Faculty and Advisors. FERPA Model Notification for Postsecondary Officials provided by the U.S. Department of Education.
Registration and Records will coordinate new hire and annual training to our community in collaboration with Human Resources and Information Technology Services. If you are requesting training, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with 'FERPA TRAINING REQUEST' in the subject line.