The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34
CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education
records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable
program of the U.S. Department of Education. FERPA gives parents certain rights
with respect to their children’s education records. These rights transfer to
the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the
high school level.
A student at Northwestern College has the following rights with regard to
his or her educational records:
The right to inspect and review the
student's education records within 45 days of the day Northwestern College
receives a request for access. Students should submit to 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.
The right to request the amendment
of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate or
A student who wishes to ask the
school to amend a record should write to the Registrar and clearly identify the
part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be
If the school decides not to amend the record
as requested by the student, the school will notify the student of the decision
and the student’s 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.
The right to provide written consent
before the college discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the
student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes
disclosure without consent.
The school discloses education
records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for
disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A
school official is a person employed by Northwestern College in an
administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position
(including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person serving
on the board of trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such
as a disciplinary or grievance committee. A school official also may
include a volunteer or contractor outside of Northwestern College who performs
an institutional service or function for which the school would otherwise use
its own employees and who is under the direct control of the school with
respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an
attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist
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 responsibilities for
The right to file a complaint with
the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Northwestern
College 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
According to FERPA, Northwestern College may release information without
the student’s written consent to the following:
school officials, as identified by
Northwestern College, determined by the college to have a legitimate
officials of other institutions in
which the student seeks to enroll,
persons or organizations providing
to the student financial aid, or determining financial aid decisions,
accrediting organizations carrying
out their accrediting functions,
parents of a student who have
established that student’s status as a dependent according to IRS Code of 1986,
persons in compliance with a
judicial order or a lawfully issued subpoena,
persons in an emergency, if the knowledge
of the information, in fact, is necessary to protect the health or
safety of the student or other persons,
another educational institution
(e.g. a high school) as long as the student is enrolled in or receives services
from the other institution.
January 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education's FERPA regulations expanded
the circumstances under which your education records and personally
identifiable information (PII) contained in such records — including your
Social Security Number, grades, or other private information — may be accessed
without your consent.
First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S.
Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education
authorities ("Federal and State Authorities") may allow access to
your records and PII without your consent to any third party designated by a
Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education
program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is "principally
engaged in the provision of education," such as early childhood education
and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education
agency or institution.
Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow
access to your education records and PII without your consent to researchers
performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when we object to or
do not request such research. Federal and State Authorities must obtain certain
use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they
authorize to receive your PII, but the Authorities need not maintain direct
control over such entities. In addition, in connection with Statewide
Longitudinal Data Systems, State Authorities may collect, compile, permanently
retain, and share without your consent PII from your education records, and
they may track your participation in education and other programs by linking
such PII to other personal information about you that they obtain from other
Federal or State data sources, including workforce development, unemployment
insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant
student records systems.
FERPA permits institutions to identify certain items of
information as “directory information”.
This information may be provided to third parties without the consent of
the student. Directory information at
Northwestern College consists of the following:
Students are entitled to request that any or all
of this information not be made publicly available. Such a request must
be made in writing to the Registrar’s Office during the first 10 days of the
name, local address, permanent address, email address, photos, and
telephone numbers (including cell phone numbers).
and place of birth.
Photo (Campus Directory)
and dates of previous high schools and colleges attended.
(FR/SO/JR/SR/SPEC), enrollment status.
field of study.
of attendance and anticipated date of graduation.
in officially recognized activities and sports.
and awards granted.
address, and telephone number of parents, guardians and/or spouse.