Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Middle Georgia University complies with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA). FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are:

  1. The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access. Students should submit to the Office of the Registrar written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The registrar 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 Office of the Registrar, the registrar shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading, or in violation of their right to privacy. Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading, or in violation of their privacy rights. They should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading, or otherwise in violation of their right to privacy. 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 or 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.

Note: FERPA was not intended to provide a process to be used to question substantive judgments which are correctly recorded. The rights of challenge are not intended to allow students to contest, for example, a grade in a course because they felt a higher grade should have been assigned.

  1. 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 that permits disclosure 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, collection agent, or official of the National Student Loan Clearinghouse); 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 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 responsibility. The University may disclose education records in certain other circumstances:

  1. to comply with a judicial order or a lawfully issued subpoena;
  2. to appropriate parties in a health or safety emergency;
  3. to officials of another school, upon request, in which a student seeks or intends to enroll;
  4. in connection with a student’s request for or receipt of financial aid, as necessary to determine the eligibility, amount, or conditions of the financial aid, or
  5. to enforce the terms and conditions of the aid;
  6. to certain officials of the U.S. Department of Education, the Comptroller General, to state and local educational authorities, in connection with certain state or federally supported education programs and military recruiters under the Solomon Amendment;
  7. to accrediting organizations to carry out their functions;
  8. to organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the University;
  9. the results of an institutional disciplinary proceeding against the alleged of a crime of violence may be released to the alleged victim of that crime with respect to that crime.
  1. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University 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, 20202-5920.
  2. The University designates the following as public or "Directory Information": The student's name, USPS mailing addresses, telephone number, major field of study, degree sought, expected date of completion of degree requirements and graduation, degrees and awards received, dates of attendance, full or part time enrollment status, the previous educational agency or institution attended, and participation in officially recognized activities and other similar information.
  3. Students may restrict the release of "Directory Information", except to school officials with legitimate educational interests and others as indicated in point #3 above. To do so, a student must make the request in writing to the Office of the Registrar, Middle Georgia State University, 100 University Parkway, Macon, GA 31206-5144. A form is available in the Registrar's Office for that purpose. Once filed, this request becomes a permanent part of the student’s record until the student instructs the University, in writing, to have the request removed. For purposes of compliance with FERPA, the University considers all students independent.