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Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA)

FERPA affords SVC students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:
  1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the day SVC receives a request for access. A student should submit to the registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.
  3. The right to provide written consent before the university discloses personally identifiable information from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
    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. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202

This act applies to all institutions that are recipients of federal funding and administered by the Secretary of Education. Southern Vermont College policy requires that we conform to federal law in this matter. You can get a complete copy of the college policy at the Registrar’s Office.

Who is protected under FERPA?
Students, who are currently or formerly enrolled in credit and non-credit classes, regardless of their age or status in regard to parental dependency, are protected.

FERPA does not apply to records of applicants for admission who are denied acceptance or, if accepted, do not attend SVC.

What are education records?
With certain exceptions, an education record is any record (1) from which a student can be personally identified and (2) is maintained by the college. Education records include any records maintained by the college except for:

  • Those in the sole possession of the maker and used as a memory maker and not shared with another person.
  • Records of the law enforcement unit of the institution, subject to the provisions of section 99.8.
  • Human resource related information.
  • Medical treatment information.
  • Information received after an individual is no longer a student.
  • Grades on peer-graded papers before they are collected and recorded by the teacher.

SVC 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 has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the College.

What is Directory Information?
SVC defines Directory Information as the following:

  • name
  • address
  • date and place of birth
  • academic program
  • class year
  • participation in official activities and sports
  • dates of attendance
  • degrees awarded
  • most recent educational institution attended
  • honors and awards
  • photographs or videos taken and maintained by the College

Students have the right to restrict the release of this information and can do so by contacting the Registrar’s Office.

A student who wishes to ask the school to amend a record should write the school official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed. If SVC 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.

For more information on FERPA visit http://familypolicy.ed.gov.

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