Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) Skip Navigation

Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

FERPA, often referred to as the "Buckley Amendment," affords students certain rights with respect to their educational records.
  1. The right to inspect and review the student's educational records within 45 days of the day the university receives his/her request for access. Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect.

  2. The university official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and the place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the university official to whom the request was submitted, that official should advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

  3. 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 University to amend a record should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.

  4. If the university decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the university will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his/her 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.

  5. The right to consent to disclosure of personally identifiable information contained in the student's educational records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

    One exception which permits disclosures without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the university has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his/her tasks.

    A school officer has a legitimate interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his/her professional responsibility.

    "Directory information" may be disclosed without the student's consent. Directory information" includes the student's name, address, class year, telephone listing, e-mail address, date and place of birth, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, photographs, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and the most previous educational agency or institution attended by the student and any other similar information.

    A student has the right to withhold the public release of any or all information directly pertaining to him/her by giving advance notice to the Dean of the College. Such advance notice must be received in the Office of the Dean of the College prior to the end of the drop/add period for each team.

Questions and Complaints

Any questions pertaining to Colgate's policy under the federal regulations protecting the privacy rights of students should be referred to the Office of the Dean of the College.

Complaints regarding alleged violations by the university of rights protected by the federal statute and regulations may be submitted to: Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Dept. of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20202-5920

Please see the Colgate Student Handbook for complete information regarding student rights and responsibilities.