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Student Records Privacy

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

The Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students three basic rights:

  1. The right to inspect and review their education records.
  2. The right to have some control over the disclosure of their education records.
  3. The right to seek the amendment of incorrect education records.

FERPA applies to all institutions that receive funds administered by the Secretary of Education.  FERPA applies to the education records of individuals, regardless of age, who are currently, or who have been, in attendance in postsecondary institutions.  Education records are those records which are directly related to a student and are maintained by an institution or a party acting for the institution.

Except under conditions specified in the Act (below), institutions may not disclose information contained in a student's education records to any third party, including parents (see Parents and FERPA), without the student's written permission.

Model Notification of Rights under FERPA for Postsecondary Institutions

FERPA Annual Notification

Notification of Student Rights under FERPA

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:

  1. 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, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The College official 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 College official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes is inaccurate. Students may ask the College to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate. 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. 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 the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. The University of North Georgia will disclose information from a student’s education records only with the written consent of the student, except:
    • 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 (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the College has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Regents; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or 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. However, a school official may not re-disclose information from a student's education records to others without the student's written consent.
    • in connection with a student’s application for, and receipt of, financial aid.
    • to comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena.
    • to parents of dependent students as defined by the Internal Revenue Code, Section 152.
    • to officials of other higher education institutions in which a student seeks or intends to enroll or has enrolled.
    • The University of North Georgia has designated the following items as Directory Information:  student’s name, address, telephone number, e-mail address, major, participation in activities, enrollment status (full- or part-time), degrees, and awards received.  The University may disclose any of these items without prior written consent, unless the student has submitted a written request to the Registrar not to release directory information pertaining to him or her.  Requests will be processed within 24 hours after receipt.
  4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University of North Georgia to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

    Family Policy Compliance Office
    U.S. Department of Education
    400 Maryland Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC 20202-4605

Questions concerning this law and the College’s procedures regarding release of academic information may be directed to the Registrar’s Office.

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