Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA)
Student Privacy Rights
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:
- The right to inspect and review their education records.
A student should submit to the Registrar, Dean, head of the academic program, or other appropriate official, a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The college official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the college official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
- The right to request an adjustment to the education record if the student finds the record to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their privacy rights.
A student who wishes to ask the college to amend a record should write the college official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.
If the college decides not to amend the record as requested, the college will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to provide written consent to disclose or withhold personal information about the student.
The college discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the college or its foundation in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position; a person or company with whom the college has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using college employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the District Board of Trustees or the Foundation Board of Directors; or a student or other person serving on an official committee, including without limitation a disciplinary, grievance, or scholarship 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 an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional or official responsibilities for the college. Upon request, the college also discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
If a student wishes to have their record remain confidential they must make the request in writing or complete and submit the Confidentiality Form to any campus Answer Center. The form is accessed through the Atlas account. A decision to refuse the release of information means the student’s name will not appear on any recognition lists such as President’s or Dean’s list or the Commencement Program. A confidential hold will be placed and remain on the record until the student submits a written consent to release the information or the student graduates from Valencia.
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the college to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
For more detailed information on FERPA visit:
valenciacollege.edu/generalcounsel/policies.cfm or ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.html
or write to:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5901
FERPA authorizes the college to disclose “directory information” upon request without consent. Valencia has identified the following as directory information:
- student’s name;
- major field of study;
- dates of attendance;
- degrees, honors and awards received.
Release of Directory Information
Valencia generally does not release student information without student consent and prefers to protect the privacy of our students by: (1) providing scholarship and award information to students through their Atlas accounts so each student can decide whether to initiate contact with a sponsoring organization regarding such opportunities; (2) providing lists of graduate names and addresses to upper division transfer institutions if there is a transfer articulation agreement with the institution at the time of the request and the nominal fee is remitted ($200 per term); (3) providing directory information to the University of Central Florida for students participating in Direct Connect; (4) providing graduate names and addresses to military organizations as required by law; and (5) not disclosing lists of students for commercial purposes except as related to specific contractual arrangements as part of college business operations.