Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA)

FERPA is the federal law that governs the rights of students and institutional responsibilities with respect to student records. If you have any questions regarding any of the information contained herein, please contact the Pure Aesthetics Natural Skincare School Compliance Office.

What is FERPA?

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, commonly referred to as FERPA, is a federal law designed to protect the privacy of a student’s educational record. FERPA applies to all educational institutions that receive federal funding for any program administered by the Secretary of Education.  FERPA also applies to private entities that contract to perform services for the institution that it would otherwise undertake to perform on its own; in such cases, the private entity must observe the same FERPA protections applicable to the school. FERPA grants adult students (18 and older) the following rights:

  • The right to inspect and review their educational records
  • The right to seek the amendment of their educational records
  • The right to consent to the disclosure of their educational records
  • The right to obtain a copy of their school’s Student Records Policy
  • The right to file a complaint with the FERPA Office in Washington, D.C.

FERPA Basics

With only a few exceptions, student educational records are considered confidential and may not be released without the written consent of the student.

All staff members have a responsibility to protect educational records in their possession.

Staff members may only access information that is needed for legitimate completion of their responsibilities as employees of the institution.

What is an Education Record?

“Education Records” include any information or data recorded in any medium, including but not limited to, handwriting, print, sound recordings,, film, e-mail, text messages or other electronic communication which is directly related to a student and maintained by the school or by a person acting for the school.

Examples of an Education Record include:

  • Admissions information for students who are accepted and enrolled;
  • Biographical information including date and place of birth, gender, nationality, information about race and ethnicity, and identification photographs;
  • Grades, test scores, evaluations, courses taken, academic specialization and activities, and official communications regarding a student’s status;
  • Course work including papers and exams, class schedules, as well as written, email or recorded communications that are part of the academic process;
  • Disciplinary records;
  • Students’ financial and financial aid records;
  • Internship program records;
  • SID:  Student Identification number.

What is NOT an Educational Record?

Education records do not include:

  • Pure Aesthetics Natural Skincare School’s law enforcement records;
  • Employment records when the employment is not connected to student status (e.g., a staff member who happens to be pursuing a degree at the institution, as opposed to a student employed under the work-study program);
  • Medical and mental health records used only for treatment of the student;
  • Alumni records which do not relate to or contain information about the person as a student (e.g., information collected by the school pertaining to alumni accomplishments);
  • “Sole possession records.” The term “sole possession records” is intended to cover memory aids or reference tools. It does not refer to records that contain information provided directly by a student or records that are used to make decisions about a student. As such, this is a very limited exception;
  • Access to Student Education Records

In general, the school will not release “personally identifiable information” from a student’s education record without the student’s prior written consent; however, FERPA allows disclosure without student consent under the following circumstances:

  • School employees who have a “legitimate educational interest” in the records in order to perform their duties;
  • Other schools where a student seeks to enroll or is enrolled;
  • Accrediting organizations;
  • Organizations doing certain studies for the school;
  • Appropriate parties to determine eligibility, amount or conditions of financial aid, or to enforce the terms and conditions of aid;
  • Parents of a “dependent student,” as defined in the Internal Revenue Code, when the parent has provided a notarized affidavit, along with a copy of the relevant page of the parent’s most recent income tax return indicating the student’s dependent status. Affidavits must be updated annually, otherwise, prior written permission from the student is required;
  • Certain government officials of the U. S. Department of Education, the Comptroller General, and state and local educational authorities, in connection with an audit, authorized representatives of the U. S. Attorney General for law enforcement purposes or state or federally supported education programs;
  • Individuals who have obtained a judicial order or subpoena;
  • School officials who have a need to know concerning disciplinary action taken against a student;
  • Appropriate parties who need to know in cases of health and safety emergencies when necessary to protect the student and/or others;
  • An alleged victim of a crime of violence or non-forcible sexual offense has a right to learn the results of a disciplinary proceeding conducted by the institution against the alleged perpetrator of the crime.
  • Information regarding any violation of school policy or state, federal or local law, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance may be released to the parents or legal guardian of a student under the age of 21;
  • Those requesting “directory information” on a student provided the student has not requested his or her information be withheld;
  • Approved vendors /3rd party operators contracted with the school to provide services.

FERPA allows for disclosure in the above circumstances, but disclosure is not required.

Directory Information / What does PA give out?

Pure Aesthetics designates the following items as directory information:

  • Student’s name*
  • Local address*
  • Home and/or mobile telephone numbers*
  • Email address*
  • Class standing/Classification
  • Dates of attendance
  • Status (full or part-time registration)
  • Honors and awards received
  • Participation in officially recognized activities

Pure Aesthetics designates the following items as limited directory information:

  • Date of birth* – Date of birth is only released to official agencies as required for matching student records.
  • Student photo – Will only be utilized and/or released when required for verification of attendance, testing, advising and identification in health and safety situations.

*The noted (*) items above can be specifically restricted by the student by making a written request to the school compliance office. It is the school’s responsibility to make sure there are no restrictions prior to releasing student data.

Restricting Release of Information

Pure Aesthetics may disclose to third-parties student information that it has designated as directory information, provided that the student has not restricted disclosure. 

Annual Notification

Consistent with its obligations, Pure Aesthetics notifies students annually of their rights under FERPA. Notification is provided to students as part of their enrollment packets, and is available online.

Comments/Questions

Questions related to FERPA should be directed to the compliance office.

Filing a Complaint

Students have a right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Pure Aesthetics to comply with the requirements of FERPA.

Student Privacy Policy Office

U.S. Department of Education

400 Maryland Avenue, SW

Washington, DC 20202-4605

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