Responsibilities Regarding Student Information
FERPA and Student Information
Each person is responsible for knowing the special considerations relative to student information and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). It is important that each employee understand the reasons for the existence of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the consequences of non-compliance, and the procedure involved in order to respond to inquiries about students’ records. FERPA is a federal law that guarantees students:
Any institution that has programs that are federally funded, through services such as Pell Grants and Stafford Loans, must comply with this law or be subject to loss of those funds. In addition, an employee who does not comply with this law may be subject to disciplinary actions or sanctions, up to and including termination, and/or accountability in a court of law.
The following guidelines will provide some assistance in complying with FERPA.
Third-parties may have access to confidential records only under specifically enumerated circumstances and all third-party requests should be referred to the Registrar’s Office. Circumstances which may allow for the sharing of confidential records include the following:
Note: Under many of the above circumstances, the third party must be advised that further disclosure is prohibited without the prior consent of the student.
Access to Student Directory Information
A Central College employee may release “directory information” without written permission of the student; however, students have the right to restrict access to directory information. For students who have made such a request with the Registrar’s Office, the specific restrictions that are requested may be identified on that student’s record in Ellucian. If an employee encounters one of these records, he or she will receive a message on the screen notifying which data has been restricted. If a student has requested that access to directory information be restricted, the employee should refer all requests for information about that student to the Registrar’s Office.
Directory information is defined as: student name; college residential address and/or phone number; college e-mail address; student home/permanent address and/or phone number; photograph; date/place of birth; parent(s) name(s); parent(s) home address; declared academic major; academic class; enrollment/registration status (i.e., full-time/part-time); dates of official enrollment/registration; participation in officially-recognized college activities (i.e., intercollegiate athletics); weight/height of members of athletic teams; degree received; honors/awards received; and educational institution most recently attended prior to Central. Social security numbers are NOT designated as directory information. Moreover, other state and/or federal laws may restrict the disclosure of social security numbers.