The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 is a federal law that affords parents the right to have access to their children's education records, the right to seek to have the records amended and the right to have some control over the disclosure of personally identifiable information from the education records. When a student turns 18 years old, or enters a postsecondary institution at any age, the rights under FERPA transfer from the parents to the student ("eligible student"). Regulations for FERPA were amended, effective in January 2012.
The U.S. Department of Education's Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) is a one-stop website for guidance, tools, and best practices on data privacy, security and confidentiality of student records, including FERPA compliance.
Also, see the Department's Family Policy Compliance Office (FPCO), which provides parents, eligible students, and school officials at the elementary, secondary, and postsecondary levels with a variety of resources and information regarding FERPA and the Pupil Rights Amendment (PPA).
- Guidance: Technical Assistance on Student Privacy for State and Local Educational Agencies When Administering College Admissions Examinations (May 2018)
- Guidance for "Eligible Students": General information about FERPA (February 2011)
- A Transgender Advocate's Guide to Updating and Amending School Records: Under FERPA, students have a right to seek to amend their school records if said records are “inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the student’s rights of privacy.” Transgender students wishing to change their name and gender marker on their educational records can seek such an amendment under this federal law.
Expand / Collapse All