What is "directory information"?
FERPA defines "directory information" as information contained in the education records of a student that would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Typically, "directory information" includes information such as name, address, telephone listing, date and place of birth, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and dates of attendance.
Can a school disclose "directory information to third parties
Yes, if it has given public notice of the types of information which it has designated as "directory information," the parent's or eligible student's right to restrict the disclosure of such information, and the period of time within which a parent or eligible student has to notify the school in writing that he or she does not want any or all of those types of information designated as "directory information." The means of notification could include publication in various sources, including a newsletter, in a local newspaper, or in the student handbook. The school could also include the "directory information" notification as part of the general notification of rights under FERPA. The school does not have to notify a parent or eligible student individually.
What are "education records" under FERPA?
Records that are directly related to you and maintained by UWF.
Who is protected under FERPA?
Students who are currently enrolled or formerly enrolled regardless of their age or status with regard to parental dependency.
Can my parents access my education records without consent?
Yes, under certain circumstances: If your parents or legal guardian can establish that you are a financial dependent, he or she can have legal access to your education records. To establish that you are a financial dependent, your parent or legal guardian must submit to UWF a copy of his or her federal tax return. The tax return must be current and must reflect that you were claimed as a dependent child for tax purposes. Note: mere payment of your college tuition does not entitle your parent or legal guardian to access your education records.
If I am a parent of a college student, do I have the right to see
my child's education records, especially if I pay the bill?
The rights under FERPA transfer from the parents to the student, once the student turns 18 years old or enters a postsecondary institution at any age. However, although the rights under FERPA have now transferred to the student, a school may disclose information from an "eligible student's" education records to the parents of the student, without the student's consent, if the student is a dependent for tax purposes. Neither the age of the student nor the parent's status as a custodial parent is relevant. If a student is claimed as a dependent by either parent for tax purposes, then either parent may have access under this provision.
As a parent, what if my child is a minor and he or she is taking
classes at a local college while still in high school - do I have rights?
If a student is attending a postsecondary institution - at any age - the rights under FERPA have transferred to the student. However, in a situation where a student is enrolled in both a high school and a postsecondary institution, the two schools may exchange information on that student. If the student is under 18, the parents still retain the rights under FERPA at the high school and may inspect and review any records sent by the postsecondary institution to the high school.