Privacy and FERPA
What is FERPA?
FERPA is a Federal Law, also known as the Buckley amendment. It protects the privacy of a student's educational records. The law applies to all educational agencies or institutions that receive funds under any program administered by the Secretary of Education.
This law gives students certain rights:
The right to inspect, review, and seek to amend their educational records
Students have access to review their educational records at any time. If a student believes that any information in their record is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their privacy rights, they may request in writing that the office which contains those records amend them. Educational records are housed in the Office of the Registrar.
The right to file a complaint with the Family Compliance Office in Washington, DC
Students must have access to review their educational records at any time. If students believe that any information in their records is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their privacy rights, they may request in writing that the office which contains those records amend them. Educational records are housed in the Office of the Registrar.
Students may file a complaint with the Family Compliance Office in Washington, DC if they feel that their rights under FERPA have been violated. Students should contact the Elizabeth City State University's Office of the Registrar for information related to filing a complaint.
The right to have directory information withheld
Directory information can be released without written consent of the student. However, FERPA provides that any student may upon written request, restrict the disclosure of directory information relating to themselves. At Elizabeth City State University, directory information is defined as:
Address, Permanent and Mailing
Email Address, University & Home
Dates of Attendance
Date of Birth
Participation in Official Recognized Activities
Degrees and Awards Received
Weight and Height of Athletes
Most Recent Previous Educational Institution(s) Attended
Anticipated Date of Graduation
A student may fill out a Non-Disclosure of Directory Information form in the Office of the Registrar during the first week of matriculation at the University if a student desires to have directory information withheld.
The right to consent to the disclosure of educational records
In accordance with the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) guidelines, the Office of the Registrar does not provide confidential information pertaining to students without a written consent from a student. This is done by completing the Consent Form and returning it to the Office of The Registrar.
Permission of students must first be obtained before releasing non-directory information. Exceptions to this rule include releasing information to the following:
- Officials or faculty of the University who have legitimate educational interest (information needed to fulfill official responsibilities)
- Officials of other schools or school systems in which the student seeks to enroll
- Certain federal and state educational authorities
- Accrediting and University-approved testing agencies - if the student is applying to another school
- Appropriate parties in connection with an emergency when the immediate health or safety of the student is threatened
- Persons presenting an officially-related judicial order or lawfully-issued subpoena
- Institutions from which the student has received, or applied for financial aid
Prior to verification or release of the educational records, the University personnel must contact the Office of the Registrar to ensure that the student has not requested that any record information, including directory information, be disclosed.
For additional information, visit U.S. Department of Education FERPA website.
Read Elizabeth City State University Policy under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)