FERPA stands for Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. It is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all colleges that receive funds such as Federal Financial Aid from the U.S. Department of Education. If you would like more information, please go to the following website: U.S. Department of Education.
FERPA governs student education records in regards to the access of student records and release of them. Directory information, which is information that is generally not considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if released, can also be disclosed to outside organizations without the student’s written consent. Directory Information defined by McDowell Technical Community College is Name, Program of study, Dates of attendance, and Degrees/Awards received. Any student who does not wish the College to release any or all of the directory information without the student’s written consent must submit a written request to the Registrar’s office.
At postsecondary institutions, any current or former student, regardless of age, is protected by the FERPA regulations. The definition of student in regards to age is found in 20 U.S.C. 1232g(d), “where a student has attained eighteen years of age, or is attending an institution of postsecondary education, the permission or consent required of and the rights accorded to the parents of the student shall thereafter only be required of and to the student .”
Under FERPA, when a student attends MTCC, all rights to inspect and review the education record transfer from the parent to the student. Student records are confidential and will only be shared by a College official to other designated parties that have a legitimate need for the information. If a student wishes to share records with a parent, spouse, or other party, they must submit a completed Authorization to Release Student Information form to identify the individual and authorize the College to provide access to the records. This privacy release will remain in effect, unless revoked in writing by the student, for the duration of enrollment at MTCC.