August 1, 2006
I. What is FERPA?
FERPA is the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974. Under the provisions of this act, students have the right to: inspect and review education records(listed below), seek to amend education records, and have some control over the disclosure of information from education records. The privacy and confidentiality of all student records shall be preserved.
II. Which information is involved?
There are two forms of information involved. Directory and non-directory information.A. Directory information: Information that is generally not considered an invasion of privacy if disclosed. This information may be made public unless the student requests, in writing, to the Registrar, that such information be released only upon his/her consent. At Oswego, this information includes:
- Student's name
- Address (including e-mail address)
- Telephone number
- Major field of study
- Class year
- Dates of attendance
- Degrees, honors, and awards received
- Previous educational institution attended
- Expected date of graduation
- Enrollment status (full/part-time)
- Student Social Security number
- Date or place of birth
- Class schedule
- Health records
- Judicial records
- Financial records
- Counseling records
- Letter of recommendation for which the student has signed a waiver to review
No entry may be made on a student's academic record and no document may be placed in his/her file without actual notice to the student. Publication of grades and announcements of honors constitute notice.
No university record may be made in direct relation to any of the following matters except upon the expressed
written request of the student:
- Social and political views; and
- Membership in any organization other than honorary and professional organizations directly related to the educational process.
Upon graduation or withdrawal from the university, the education records and information concerning former students shall continue to be subject to the provisions of this code.
III. Which information can a student not see?
The following records are not available for student inspection:
A. Records of instructional, supervisory and administrative personnel which are in the sole possession of the maker thereof, and which are not accessible to other persons.
B. Records created or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional which are used only in connection with the provisions of treatment of a student, and are not available to persons other than those individuals providing such treatment.
C. Records and documents of a law enforcement unit, including those of the Department of University Police, except those available under the Freedom of Information Act.
D. Financial records of student's parents.
E. Confidential letters and statements of recommendation placed in a student's file prior to January 1, 1975, or those received after January 1, 1975, for which the student has signed a waiver of his/her right to access, provided these letters are used only for the purposes for which they are intended.
IV. What are the exceptions?
Information in a student's educational records will not be released to third parties without the student's written consent, except as indicated below:
A. Officials of the university, including instructional staff, who have legitimate educational interests.
B. Officials of other schools in which the student seeks to enroll.
C. Accrediting organizations.
D. Federal and state educational authorities and organizations conducting studies for such authorities in the areas of testing, student aid, and instruction.
E. Those individuals who seek information pursuant to a judicial order or subpoena.
F. Appropriate persons in connection with an emergency involving the health or safety of individuals.
G. Parents or legal guardians of students who are under the age of 21 and who have been found in violation of university disciplinary policies (Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities and Conduct) with respect to any violation of any federal, state or local law, or of any rule or policy of the institution governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance.
V. Where are records maintained?
Official student academic records, supporting documents, and other student files shall be maintained only by members of the university staff employed for that purpose. Separate files shall be maintained of the following educational records:
A. Academic records, supporting documents, and general education records - maintained by the Registrar, academic departments and advisors, and the Deans' offices;
B. Records of disciplinary proceedings - maintained by the Vice President for Student Affairs or his/her designee;
C. Financial records - maintained by the Business Office;
D. Medical records - maintained by the Health Center;
E. Financial aid records - maintained by the Office of Student Financial Aid;
F. Placement records - maintained by the Career Services Office;
G. Counseling records - maintained by the Counseling Services Center;
H. Incident reports - maintained by University Police.
All such records are the property of the university.
VI. Who to contact in case of questions?
The college’s Records Access Officer: Julie Harrison Blissert, Room 210 Culkin Hall, 312.2265.