»FERPA : Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
What is FERPA?
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.
FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children's education records. However, these rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level (such as Queens College). Students to whom the rights have transferred are “eligible students.”
Who may review student information and records? Any matriculated student at Queens College is an “eligible student,” and information may not be shared with anyone other than the student without the express written consent of the student. Verbal consent is permitted when the student is present (i.e., in a meeting with a student and his/her parents).
FERPA allows schools to disclose those records, without consent, to the following parties or under the following conditions:
- School officials with legitimate educational interest;
- Other schools to which a student is transferring;
- Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes;
- Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student;
- Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the school;
- Accrediting organizations;
- To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena;
- Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and
- State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State law.
This means that information may be shared among officials at Queens College, as long as there is a legitimate need to do so. Information may not be shared with students’ parents or family members, unless the student has given express written or verbal (only when the student is present) consent to do so. It is always preferable that the student be present when information is shared in order to ensure that consent is given voluntarily.
The information in this document was obtained from US Department of Education website; http://www.ed.gov/ferpa.