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FERPA Statement

Notification of Rights Under FERPA 

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education. 
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are: 
  1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the date the University receives a request for access. 
  • Current and former students who wish to make a FERPA-related request to view records should submit to the Office of the University Registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. 
  • Students are advised to provide complete information in order to assist the University in following up on the request. Federal law requires that the University provide access to requested extant records within 45 days. A Registrar’s Office official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records requested are not under the control of the Registrar’s Office, the Registrar’s Office will make arrangements for the relevant office to provide the records within the time frame established under the law. 

2.  The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA. 

a) A student may ask the University to amend the record that he or she believes is inaccurate or misleading. The student should write the University official responsible for the record (with a copy to the University Registrar), clearly identify the part of the records he or she wants changed, and specify why it should be changed. 
b) If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student. The University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. 
c) Additional information regarding the hearing procedures is provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing. 
3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
  • FERPA contains various exceptions to the general rule that the University should not disclose education records without seeking the prior written consent of the student. The following circumstances are representative of those in which education records (and information drawn from education records) may be disclosed without the student’s prior consent: 
  • * School officials who have a legitimate educational interest in a student’s education record may be permitted to review it. A school official is: a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student or volunteer serving on an official committee (or representing a recognized student group), such as a disciplinar4y or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review and education record in order to fulfill his or hers responsibility to Palo Alto University or to the student. 
  • * The University discloses education records without consent to officials of another school, in which a student seeks or intends to enroll, upon request of the officials at that other school. 
  • * The University may choose to disclose education records (and information drawn from education records) to either supporting parent(s) or guardian(s) where the student is claimed as a dependent under the Internal Revenue Code. 
  • * The University may inform persons including either parent(s) or guardian(s) when disclosure of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other persons. 
  • * For students under the age of 21, the University may notify either parents(s) of guardian(s) of a violation of any law or policy relating to the use of alcohol or controlled substances. 
  • * The University must provide records in response to lawfully issued subpoenas, or as otherwise compelled by legal process. 
4. The right to file complaint with the U.S Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. 
The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:  
Family Policy Compliance Office 
U.S. Department of Education 
400 Maryland Avenue, SE  
Washington, DC  20202-4605