The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. When a student enters a postsecondary institution at any age, the right to access and control disclosure of education records under FERPA transfers from the student's parents (as in the K-12 setting) to the student.
In most circumstances, family members will need to show an authorization form signed by the student to allow the release of information. An electronic form is located below. Any document that includes the following would also be valid: who is authorized to release the information; to whom the information may be released; what information may be released; the purpose for which the information may be used; the student's signature; and a date. A simple email from a student is not a sufficient authorization.
School officials may honor a copy of a valid release, including a fax. An authorization could permit disclosure of information by phone or e-mail so long as an otherwise valid release is on file. A form could also authorize on-going disclosures, such as grades each semester.
For more information, visit FERPA for Parents.
Last modified: July 9th, 2014 at 09:20am