Understanding FERPA

According to FERPA (the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, also known as the Buckley Amendment), college students are considered responsible adults and are allowed to determine who will receive information about them. Under this law, parents who want to receive a copy of their student’s academic or financial records can do so only if their student signs a release form.

FAQs: Student Records and FERPA

» How can I get a copy of my student’s grades?
» If I’m paying for my child’s education, why can’t I get a copy of their records?
» Isn’t there a FERPA provision that colleges and universities can contact parents if a student violates alcohol or drug policies?
» Where can I find out more about FERPA?

Q: How can I get a copy of my student’s grades?

The easiest way for parents to receive information about their student’s grades is to ask their student to provide it. Students can look up information online from their InSite account and give or email copies to their parents.

Q: If I’m paying for my child’s education, why can’t I get a copy of their records?

FERPA requires that access to a college student’s records must be granted by approval of the student. Parents can, however, receive some information about their student’s records if the student agrees to provide access.  Please note that this access only specifies certain areas of a student’s records, and does not cover medical or counseling records.

Q: Isn’t there a FERPA provision that colleges and universities can contact parents if a student violates alcohol or drug policies?

FERPA regulations allow, but do not require, higher education institutions to provide notice to parents when a student violates federal, state, or local laws related to alcohol or drugs.

Q: Where can I find out more about FERPA?

Additional information is located in the Office of the Registrar or through the U.S. Department of Education.

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