Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 - Official Notice to Students (Revised 6 April 2016)
For the purposes of this policy, TAMUK has used the following definitions of terms:
Student: A person who attends or has attended a program of instruction sponsored by TAMUK and for whom the institution maintains education records. The term does not include an individual who has not been in actual attendance at TAMUK.
Education Records: Records include, but are not limited to, handwriting, print, video or audio tapes, film or computer media, microfilm or microfiche maintained by TAMUK, an employee of TAMUK or agent of TAMUK, and which are related to the student.
Student Records Policy for Texas A&M University-Kingsville
Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), as Amended, the following directory information may be made public unless the student desires to withhold all of this information:
Major or Minor
Dates of Attendance
Number of Hours Enrolled in Current Semester
Participation in Officially Recognized Activities and Sports
Weight and Height of Members of Athletic Teams
Degrees and Awards Received
All Previous Educational Agencies or Institutions Attended
A currently enrolled student may request that directory information not be made public by completing the FERPA Release Form available on the Office of the Registrar web page. If you request that your directory information be restricted, no information will be released.
Only currently enrolled students are eligible to restrict directory information. Once a student has left the university, they can no longer set restrictions on directory information at the university. If a student restricts his/her directory information and leaves the university, the restriction continues until the student removes it. Texas A&M University-Kingsville and the Office of the Registrar will exercise discretion in the release of all directory information.
Notification of Rights
FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:
1. The right to inspect and review, with certain limited exceptions, the student's educational records, including the right to receive explanations and interpretations of the records and to obtain copies of the records when such are needed to allow the student to effectively exercise his/her right of inspection and review;
2. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent;
- One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person or entity: (a) employed by the university or the university system in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position; (b) serving on a university governing body or duly authorized panel or committee; or (c) employed by or under contract to the university to perform a special task, function, or service for the university.
- A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the information requested is necessary for that official to (a) perform appropriate tasks that are specified in his/her position description or in the performance of regularly assigned duties by a lawful supervisor; (b) fulfill the terms of a contractual agreement; (c) perform a task related to a student's education; (d) perform a task related to the discipline of a student; or (e) provide a service or benefit relating to the student or student's family, such as health care, financial aid, job placement, or former student-related activities.
- Disclosure to a school official having a legitimate educational interest does not constitute university authorization to transmit, share, or disclose any or all information received to third parties unless such disclosure is permitted or required by law.
3. The right to correct a student's education records when the records are inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of FERPA;
4. The right to report violations of FERPA to the Department of Education.
Records Not Available Under FERPA
Students shall have access to all of their educational records as maintained by the university with the exception of the following:
1. A personal record kept by a University official which meets the following tests:
- It is in the personal possession of the individual who made it.
- Information contained in it has never been revealed or made available to any other person except the maker's temporary substitute.
2. An employment record which is used only in relation to a student's employment by the university, except where an individual in attendance at the university is employed as a result of his or her status as a student.
3. Records relating to a student which are created or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist or other recognized professional or para-professional acting in his or her professional or para-professional capacity, or assisting that capacity, which are used in connection with providing treatment to a student, are not disclosed to anyone other than the individuals providing the treatment.
4. Financial records and statements of a student's parents/legal guardians.
5. Confidential letters and statements of recommendation which are placed in the education records of a student prior to January 1, 1975.
6. Confidential letters and statements of recommendation which are placed in the education records of a student on or after January 1, 1975, if the student has waived his or her right to inspect and review the letters or statements.
7. Records concerning admissions to an academic component of the university which the student has never attended.
Certification of Dependency
Under FERPA, students enrolled in post-secondary educational institutions are deemed to “own” their educational records.
Generally non-directory information will not be released to a parent or guardian unless a “Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) Authorization Release” form is completed and signed by the student and the original is brought to the Javelina Enrollment Services Center located in the Memorial Student Union Building (Room 132) or mailed to the Office of the Registrar, 700 University Blvd., MSC 105, Kingsville, TX 78363.
Penalties for Violating FERPA
The Family Policy Compliance Office reviews and investigates complaints of violations of FERPA. The penalty for violating FERPA is loss of all federal funding, including grants and financial aid.
If you witness or commit what you believe to be a possible FERPA violation, please notify the Office of the Registrar immediately at 361-593-2811 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Office of the Registrar will investigate the matter and determine what action, if any, should be taken. If you have any questions about FERPA compliance or the release of student information, please contact the University Registrar at email@example.com or 361-593-2811.