FERPA stands for the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records.

  • It applies to all educational institutions that receive federal funding, including colleges and universities.
  • FERPA gives students the right to access their own education records and to request that any inaccurate or misleading information be corrected.
  • Schools cannot disclose students’ education records without their consent, except in certain limited circumstances, such as when the disclosure is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or others.
  • FERPA also allows schools to disclose certain types of information without the student’s consent, such as directory information (e.g. name, address, phone number) unless the student has requested that it be kept private.
  • FERPA applies to all students in higher education, regardless of their age or status as a dependent.
  • Even if a student’s parents are paying for their education, the school cannot disclose their education records without the student’s consent.
  • FERPA is an important law that helps protect the privacy of students’ education records and gives students control over who can access their information.

For more information, get information about FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) is the U.S. Department of Education’s website at ed.gov. 

Specifically, you can visit the page dedicated to FERPA at https://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.html. This page provides an overview of what FERPA is, who it applies to, and what rights it gives to students and their parents. It also includes information on how schools must protect students’ education records and when they can disclose them without prior consent.

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Regulations (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99)