What Parents Need to Know

As a parent, you may want access to your student’s grades, financial records, discipline records, and other records. We recognize how important parents and other family members are to the success of our students, but we are limited to the information that we can share by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) which protects and governs the release of certain student records.

When a student, regardless of age, enters the university, all rights to inspect and review the education record transfer from the parent to the student.  Under FERPA, the parent has no right to review the record unless granted permission, in writing, by the student. 

Many of the records that parents generally would like to access are known as “Education Records.”  Education records include such items as financial records, grades, and discipline records.  These records are not maintained in a central location; therefore, if a student wants to review them, s/he must request viewing of these records with each office that has their part of the record. The institution has 45 days to comply with any request to view the records, although that length of time is seldom necessary.   The university may not disclose education records or personally identifiable information contained therein without the written consent of the student to any individual, agency, or organization. 

We recommend that if you want information about your student’s education records, speak directly with your student.  As noted above, a student may consent in writing for the university to release specific records to parents.  When a signed consent is on file, parents may then send written requests for copies of records.  You also have an option to obtain records by providing evidence that your student is a financial dependent under Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.

In summary, the record belongs to the student. Parents only have rights to the record that are granted by the student. This means that you cannot receive grades, the academic transcript, or a class schedule unless the student shows it to you or signs a release indicating that he/she wants you to be able to request that information.