The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the California Education Code afford students enrolled in an institution of higher education (“eligible students”) and parents of dependent students certain rights with respect to the student’s education records. They are:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access.Eligible students or parents should submit to the Registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The Registrar will make arrangements for access and notify the eligible student or parent of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
- The right to request an amendment of the student’s education records that the eligible student or parent believes are inaccurate or misleading.Eligible students or parents may ask Holy Names University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the Registrar, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the eligible student or parent, the University will notify the eligible student or parent of the decision and advise them of their rights to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the eligible student or parent when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information (PII) contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to “university officials” with “legitimate educational interests”. A “university official” is a person employed by the University as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff; a person serving on the Board of Trustees; a person or company with whom the University has contracted to perform a special task (such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant, or therapist); a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee: or a student assisting another university official in performing his or her tasks. A university official has a “legitimate educational interest” if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility and/or clearly specified duties.As of January 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education’s FERPA regulations expand the circumstances under which your education records and private information contained in such records—including your Social Security Number, grades, or other private information—may be accessed without your consent. First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities (“Federal and State Authorities”) may allow access to your records and personally-identifiable information (PII) without your consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is “principally engaged in the provision of education,” such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution. Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to your education records and PII without your consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when we object to or do not request such research. Federal and State Authorities must obtain certain use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they authorize to receive your PII, but the Authorities need not maintain direct control over such entities. In addition, in connection with Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, State Authorities may collect, compile, permanently retain, and share without your consent PII from your education records, and they may track your participation in education and other programs by linking such PII to other personal information about you that they obtain from other Federal or State data sources, including workforce development, unemployment insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant student records systems.
- The University has designated the following student information “directory information”, and at their discretion may release this information:Category 1: name, address, email, telephone number, dates of attendance.Category 2: major field of study, full- or part-time status, graduate or undergraduate status, image (photograph or video), awards, honors (including Dean’s List), degree(s) conferred (including dates).Category 3: past and present participation in officially recognized sports and activities, physical factors (height, weight of athletes), date and place of birth.As required by Section 99.37 of the FERPA regulations, this serves as annual public notice of this action. Directory information may be disclosed even in the absence of consent unless the student files written notice requesting the University not to disclose any of the above categories. The form for placing and removing a directory information hold is available in the Student Resource Center. In order to avoid automatic disclosure of directory information, a student’s written notice must be submitted within two weeks of the first day of the semester in which the student begins each academic year and must be re-filed annually. This hold will remain in effect for one year unless changed subsequently by resubmitting the form to the Student Resource Center. Students requiring a longer hold period should meet with the Registrar to discuss the available options.
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University 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 20202-5920