STUDENT ACCESS TO EDUCATION RECORDS:
FEDERAL FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT OF 1974 (FERPA)
The University adheres to the Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (the “Buckley Amendment”). The Buckley Amendment became effective November 19, 1974. This Act has the following purposes: (a) to protect the privacy of educational records by limiting the release of records maintained by the University and information contained therein, without written consent of the individual student, with some exceptions in special circumstances (e.g., parents of dependent students), (b) to establish the rights of students to inspect and review their educational records, and (c) to provide guidelines for the correction of inaccurate or misleading information contained in such records through formal and informal hearings. In compliance with the provisions of this law, the University grants access to students requesting an opportunity to review records as provided in this legislation.
The law covers the educational records of all present and former students of Pace University. This includes part-time as well as full-time students. The term “educational records” includes all records, files, data, and other materials that contain information directly related to a student and that are maintained by Pace University or by a person acting for Pace. Not included among the materials to which a student shall have access are the following:
- Financial records of a student’s parents.
- Confidential letters and statements or recommendations placed in an individual’s file prior to January 1, 1975.
- Letters of recommendation in those circumstances specified by the Act, in which a student may waive his/ her right of access.
- Records maintained solely for law enforcement purposes by Pace.
- Records of instructional, supervisory, administrative and certain educational personnel that are in the sole possession of the maker thereof, and are not accessible or revealed to any other individual except a substitute, who performs on a temporary basis (defined in the institution personnel policy) the duties of the individual who made the record.
- Records relating to individuals, who are employed by the institution, which are made and maintained in the normal course of business, relating exclusively to individuals in their capacity as employees, and are not available for use for any other purpose. (Records of individuals in attendance at an institution, who are employed as a result of their status as students, are education records—e.g., work-study.)
Any student who wishes to review his/her official University records is asked to file a written request with the administrator responsible for the record in question. All legitimate requests will be honored within 45 working days. Valid identification will be requested at the time of review and a University official will be present throughout the period of inspection. Copies of the material will be available for a fee.
After viewing the records, a student who believes that the information or data contained therein are incorrect, misleading or otherwise in violation of privacy or any other of his/her rights may request a hearing. Such a hearing enables the student to challenge the accuracy or appropriateness of the information contained in the records. The Dean for Students is responsible for arranging a hearing according to the procedures established by the University for this purpose.
Pace University will disclose information from a student’s education records only with the written consent of the student, except:
To school officials who have a legitimate educational interest in the records. A school official is:
- A person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, legal or support staff position.
- A person elected to the Board of Trustees.
A person employed by or under contract to the University to perform a special task, such as a consultant, attorney, auditor or collection agent.
A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is:
- Performing a task that is specified in his or her position description or by a contract agreement.
- Performing a task related to a student’s education.
- Performing a task related to the discipline of a student.
- Providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student’s family, such as health care, counseling, job placement or financial aid.
- To officials of another school, upon request, in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
- To certain officials of the U.S. Department of Education, the Comptroller General, and state and local educational authorities, in connection with certain state or federally-supported education programs.
- 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 to enforce the terms and conditions of the aid.
- If required by a state law requiring disclosure that was adopted before November 19, 1974.
- Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the University.
- To accrediting organizations to carry out their functions.
- To parents of an eligible student who claim the student as a dependent for income tax purposes.
- To comply with a judicial order or a lawfully served subpoena.
- To appropriate parties in a health or safety emergency.
In addition to the foregoing, the law provides that “Directory Information” may be released to all parties seeking this information without prior consent of the student unless the student has specifically requested that prior consent be obtained in all cases.
At Pace University, “Directory Information” is on file in the Office of Student Assistance and includes the student’s name, date of birth, major field of study, e-mail address, attendance dates, degrees and honors, and awards received.
In addition, participation in intercollegiate sports and the height and weight of athletes are considered “Directory Information.” Student athletes who do not wish this information made public without their prior consent must so advise the Director of Athletics in writing.
Students who wish their prior consent to be sought before “Directory Information” is made available to third parties must file their written requests in the Office of Student Assistance.
Pace will honor any student’s request to withhold any or all of the “Directory Information” applicable to said student but cannot assume responsibility to contact that student for subsequent permission to release such information, regardless of the effect upon that student.
Students also have the right to file complaints with the Family Educational Right and Privacy Act (FERPA) office concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the Act.
A Pace University Policy Statement in connection with this Act may be obtained from the Office of the Dean for Students.
TRANSCRIPT OF RECORDS
Transcripts of student records are available by written request to the Office of Student Assistance. Current students may also request a transcript via the Web (www.pace.edu). A fee is charged for both official as well as unofficial copies of transcripts.
No transcript will be released for students in financial arrears with the University.
Official transcripts are sent directly to other institutions; transcripts sent to students are marked “Student Copy.” The University accepts no responsibility for the accuracy of an unofficial transcript after it has been issued.