Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA)
Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA) Policy
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA” ‐ 20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to students who are at least eighteen years old or who attend or attended a post‐secondary institution, even if they have not reached the age of eighteen.
It is the policy of Butler County Community College (“the College”) to comply with all provisions of FERPA.
To view the definitive set of regulations and for other helpful information, please visit: http://www.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.html
Education Record - Education Record means any record (1) directly related to a student and (2) maintained by the College or a party acting for the College. There are several important categories of records that are specifically exempted from the definition of an Education Record:
- Records of instructional, supervisory, administrative, and certain educational personnel which are in the sole possessionof the maker of the records, and are not accessible or revealed to any other individual except a substitute who performs on a temporary basis the duties of the individual who made the records,
- Records maintained by a law enforcement unit of the College that were created by that law enforcement unit for the purpose of law enforcement,
- Records relating to individuals who are employed by the College, which are made and maintained in the normal courseof business, relate exclusively to individuals in their capacity as employees, and are not available for use for any other purpose,
- Records relating to a student which are: (1) created or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional, acting in their professional capacity or assisting in a paraprofessional capacity; (2) used solely in connection with the provision of treatment to the student; and (3) not disclosed to anyone other than individuals providing such treatment.
- Records that only contain information about an individual after they are no longer a student at the College.
School Official - A school official is a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel); a person or company with whom the College has contracted as its agent to provide a service (such as an attorney, auditor, collection agent, learning management system vendor (e.g., Colleague, Blackboard), or other contractor which has agreed to assume responsibility specifically for the security of student records in the capacity of a “school official”; a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, (e.g. such as a disciplinary or grievance 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 responsibilities for the College.
Type and Location of Education Records
The principal education record of each student is maintained by the Records and Registration Office in the Student Success Center. The Dean of Admissions and College Registrar or designee is responsible for these records. Inquiries concerning these records must be made in writing to the Dean of Admissions and College Registrar ordesignee.
The following offices maintain administrative (rather than academic) records relevant to their work. Inquiries concerning non‐confidential records should be made in writing to the person supervising the record with a copy to Dean of Admissions and College Registrar.
A. Director of Financial Aid: financial aid letters, records, forms (parental information confidential to student)
B. Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management and the Dean of Student Development: disciplinary action files
C. Academic Center for Enrichment: current test/evaluation records, and personal notes from counseling sessions (confidential to student)
D. Controller: records pertaining to student’s charges and payments (parental information is confidential to student)
E. Director of Campus Police and Security: accident reports, vehicle registrations, criminal record information (confidential to student with exceptions)
F. Vice President of Academic Affairs and Academic Division Deans: class rosters, tests, attendance and classroom related notes
Legitimate Educational Interest
The demonstrated “need to know” by those officials of an institution who act in students’ educational interest, including faculty, administration, clerical and professional employees, and other persons who manage student record information including student employees or agents. (Although The Act does not define “legitimate educational interest,” it states that institutions must establish their own criteria, according to their own procedures and requirements, for determining when their school officials have a legitimate educational interest in a student’s educational records.)
Personally Identifiable Information
Data or information which includes, but is not limited to (a) the student’s name; (b) the name of the student’s parent or other family members; (c) the address of the student or student’s family; (d) a personal identifier, such as the student’s social security number, student number, or biometric record; (e) other indirect identifies, such as the student’s date of birth, place of birth, and mother’s maiden name; (f) other information that, alone or in combination, is linked or linkable to a specific student and that would allow a reasonable person in the school community who does not have personal knowledge of the relevant circumstances to identify the student with reasonable certainty; or (g) information requested by a person who the educational agency or institution reasonably believes knows the identity of the student to whom the education record relates.
Student Rights Under FERPA
This policy applies to all Butler County Community College students (former and current) who have attended classes resulting in education records maintained at the college. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their own education records. These rights include:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the College receives a request for access.
A student should submit to the Dean of Admissions and College Registrar or designee, 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 the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.
A student who wishes to ask the College to amend a record should write the Dean of Admissions and College Registrar or designee, clearly identifying the part of the record the student wants changed, and specifying 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 before the College discloses personally identifiable information from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
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 in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel); a person or company with whom the College has contracted as its agent to provide a service (such as an attorney, auditor, collection agent, learning management system vendor (e.g., Colleague, Blackboard), or other contractor which has agreed to assume responsibility specifically for the security of student records in the capacity of a “school official”; a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, (e.g. such as a disciplinary or grievance 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 responsibilities for the College. Upon request, the College may disclose education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll. The month and year of date of birth will be disclosed only for purposes of law enforcement, health and safety, and identity verification. Finally, “directory information” may be released freely unless the student files the appropriate form requesting that directory information not be released. This form is available through the Records and Registration Office.
“Directory information” is limited to the following:
- Student’s name
- Telephone listing
- Electronic mail address
- Date of Birth
- Place of Birth
- Major field of study
- Grade level
- Enrollment status (e.g. undergraduate or graduate, full-time or part-time)
- Dates of attendance
- Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
- Weight and height of members of athletic teams
- Degrees, honors, and awards received
- Most recent educational agency or institution attended
4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Butler County Community 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 20202‐5901
In the event of questions or concerns regarding this policy or other matters pertaining to FERPA, a student can contact the Records and Registration Office at 724.284.8510 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. All FERPA policy related forms can be found on the BC3 website.
Butler County Community College is committed to providing equal opportunity in admissions and treatment of students, in educational programs for students, in employment opportunities and in governance of the College, without regard to race, color, religious creed, ancestry, national origin, handicap or disability, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, family status, or other classification protected by applicable law.
The College shall take affirmative action to ensure (1) that it does not discriminate against an employee or applicant for employment or another person because of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, national origin, handicap or disability, age, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, family status, or other classification protected by applicable law; (2) that it does not subject students to unlawful discrimination in the admission process, take any action, direct or indirect, to segregate students in a classroom or course, or subject students to different or separate treatment in, nor restrict the enjoyment by a student of, a service, facility, activity or program at the College on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, national origin, handicap or disability, age, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, family status, or other classification protected by applicable law; and (3) that it does not discriminate in the employment of administrators on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, national origin, handicap or disability, age, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, family status, or other classification protected by applicable law and that its governance structure includes diverse membership broadly representative of the public interest as may be required by law or regulation.
There shall be no retaliation against any applicant, employee, or student for filing a harassment or discrimination complaint, or assisting, testifying, or participating in the investigation of such a complaint. Any applicant, employee, or student reporting sexual or other harassment or discrimination will also be protected from reprisals or retaliation by the College, any supervisors, and/or co-workers as a result of such complaint(s).
The College is committed to be in compliance with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (43 P. S. §§ 951-962.2) and the Pennsylvania Fair Educational Opportunities Act (24 P.S. § § 5001-5009). Employment and educational opportunities at Butler County Community College are available to all as required by Title VI, Title VII, Title IX, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Pennsylvania Fair Educational Opportunities Act, the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, and all applicable laws and regulations.
For information regarding equal education and employment opportunity including services, activities and facilities that are usable and accessible to disabled persons, contact the Executive Director of Human Resources/Equal Opportunity Compliance Officer, Butler County Community College by telephone at (724) 287-8711, Ext. 8353, or in writing at 107 College Drive, Butler, PA 16002. If an applicant, employee, or student is physically or mentally disabled, he/she may request accommodations, academic adjustments, or auxiliary aids or services. Information on the College’s services for disabled students may be obtained from the Academic Counselor and Disabilities Coordinator at Ext. 8327. Employees or applicants should contact the Executive Director of Human Resources/Equal Opportunity Compliance Officer at Ext. 8353 for more information.
For information regarding the College’s Grievance Procedure, visit our website at www.bc3.edu/humanresources/grievance-procedure.asp or contact the Executive Director of Human Resources/Equal Opportunity Compliance Officer, Butler County Community College by telephone at Ext. 8353 or in writing at the above address.
The Director of Student Life under the direction of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management has general responsibility for determining distribution privileges and for enforcing the following guidelines:
A. Distribution of Literature
- Permission to distribute literature must be obtained from the Director of Student Life - upper level of the Student Success Center, Ext. 8249.
- Literature may only be distributed in designated areas assigned by the Director of Student Life.
B. Bulletin Board
- Any information placed on campus bulletin boards by off-campus agencies or persons must be dated and stamped for approval at the Student Life Office in the upper level of the Student Success Center.
- The approved material may be posted for no more than three weeks. Permission for extended posting must be granted by the Director of Student Life.
- Posted materials must bear the name of the sponsoring individual or organization.
- The Director of Student Life will be responsible for removing outdated materials on all bulletin boards.
C. Solicitation on Campus
- Permission to promote political, social, etc. causes by means of soliciting, surveying, or otherwise encountering students on the Butler County Community College campus must be granted by the Director of Student Life. Such solicitation must be restricted to voluntary, not mandatory, student interest.
- Individuals or organizations not affiliated directly with Butler County Community College will not be permitted to sell any product, food, raffle ticket, or service on the College campus without permission from the Director of Student Life. Any approved sale will be restricted to a designated area and may not involve involuntary solicitation.
D. Solicitation off-campus
- Individuals or organizations representing the College are not permitted to solicit off-campus without permission of the Director of Student Life. This includes raffle tickets, sponsorships, and other fund raisers.
- Individuals or organizations representing the College are not permitted to solicit or authorize advertising without the permission of the Director of Student Life. Examples include ads in programs, welcome folders, event sponsorships, etc.
The guidelines are intended to protect the rights of students, to maintain the aesthetic quality of Butler County Community College, and to make it possible for divergent views to be expressed in an orderly manner. Decisions of the Director of Student Life may be appealed to the Dean of Student Development and, ultimately, to the College President.