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University of Richmond FERPA Policy Statement

PDF version of the full FERPA policy statement

Purpose

The University of Richmond is committed to maintaining the privacy and confidentiality of education records, to providing students with appropriate access to their education records and to compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 ("FERPA") and its implementing regulations. The purpose of this policy is to set forth the University's policies and procedures regarding the privacy of and access to education records.

Scope of Policy

This policy applies to the education records of all students and former students of the University of Richmond. Faculty, staff and students of the University as expected to comply with this policy.

Sections

Student Rights Under FERPA

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (commonly referred to as FERPA or the "Buckley Amendment") affords students certain rights with respect to their education records.  These rights 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. 

A student should submit a written request to the Office of the University Registrar and specify the record(s) he or she wishes to inspect.  The Registrar's Office will make arrangements with the appropriate office for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. 

2. 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 right sunder 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.

If the University decides not to amend the record as requested, the University will notify the student in writing 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.

3. The right to provide written consent before the University discloses personally identifiable information from the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. 

The University of Richmond discloses education records without a student's prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate education interests. 

A school official is defined by the University as:

  • A person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research or support staff position, including but not limited to employees of the University Police Department, Student Health Service, or CAPS;
  • A member of the Board of Trustees or a committee of the Board of Trustees;
  • A person, including a student, serving on an institutional governing body, council or committee (such as Honor Councils, Student Government Associations, etc.);
  • A person or entity engaged by or under contract to the University to provide services to or otherwise act on behalf of the University (e.g. an attorney, auditor, consultant);
  • A volunteer providing services to or otherwise acting on behalf of the University;
  • A student conducting University business (e.g. serving on an official committee, working for the University, or assisting another school official in fulfilling his or her professional responsibility); and
  • Any other person determined by the Office of the Provost or Office of the Vice President of Student Development to have a need to know the information in order to perform his or her administrative tasks, to provide a service or benefit for a student, or to fulfilla legitimate educational interest of the University.

A School Official is determined to have Legitimate Educational Interest in personally identifiable information in an Education Record if the School Official requires such information to:

  • Fulfill his or her responsibility or duty to the University;
  • Perform tasks within the scope of his or her employment or within the scope of a contract with the University;
  • Perform a task related to a student's education;
  • Perform a task related to the discipline of a student;
  • Provide a service or benefit relating to the student or student's family, such as health care, counseling, job placement, pastoral counseling, or financial aid; or
  • Maintain the safety and security of the campus.

The University may disclose directory information about a student, without their consent, unless the student has specifically requested in writing to withhold the release of information. Written requests to withhold the release of public information must be submitted to the Office of the University Registrar.  The request will be honored (even after the student graduates) until the student specifically directs the University otherwise. 

Directory information, as defined by the University of Richmond includes:

  • Name
  • Addresses: permanent, campus, local (off-campus), e-mail, campus computer network (IP) address, and net ID
  • Associated telephone numbers
  • Date and place of birth
  • School or college
  • Major and/or minor fields of study
  • Degree sought
  • Expected date of completion of degree requirements and graduation
  • Degrees conferred (including dates of conferral)
  • Awards and Honors (e.g. Dean's list)
  • Full or part time enrollment status
  • Dates of attendance
  • Previous institutions attended
  • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  • Weight and height of members of athletic teams
  • Photographic and videotaped images of the student

Please note:  Because of the access afforded by a University ID, this number should be treated as confidential--it should be protected and not carelessly shared with others.  It will be used for a student's entire time at the University of Richmond, so it should always be treated in a confidential manner.

4.  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 20202-5901

The University's complete FERPA Policy statement can be found on the University Registrar's Web page at registrar.richmond.edu/ferpa/statement/index.html.  For additional questions contact the Registrar's office at 289-8639 or registrar@richmond.edu.

Approved: December 14, 2010