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Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Student Confidentiality

Lasell University regulates access to and release of a student's records in accordance with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 as amended (PL 93-380, Section 438, The General Education Provisions Act). The purpose of the act is to protect the privacy of students regarding:

  • the release of records, and
  • access to records maintained by the institution.

In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (the Buckley Amendment), Lasell University has committed itself to protecting the privacy rights of its students and to maintaining the confidentiality of its records. A copy of the law is available in the Registrar's Office.

The following is a summary of the rights of students under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Students' Rights

1. Review and Inspection of Records
Students have the right to review and inspect their educational records as defined in Section VII of the Policy within a reasonable time of a request to the Registrar's Office. All requests to inspect records will be fulfilled within 45 days. The University has an obligation to respond to reasonable requests from students for explanation of their education records. If a student is unable to inspect personally his/her education record, the University is obligated to provide a copy of the record requested upon the payment of a copying fee.

2. Right to request an Amendment of Records
A student has the right to request that the University amend education records which the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the privacy or other rights of the student. The University will decide whether or not to amend such records and so inform the student.

3. Rights to a Hearing to Challenge the Contents of Records
A student has the right to challenge the contents of education records the student believes are inaccurate, misleading or in violation of the privacy or rights of the student. The hearing is conducted by the Vice President for Academic Affairs. If the student prevails at the hearing; the student has the right to request an amendment to the record. Should the student not prevail, the student may enter an explanation in the records setting forth the reason(s) for disagreeing with the hearing decision.

4. Right to Refuse Designation of Directory Information
Lasell University considers the following as public information (described in the Policy as "directory information"): name, term, home and electronic address, campus address and mailbox number, (cell & home) telephone and voice mailbox number, date and place of birth, photograph, electronic portfolio (EPortfolio) major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, program of enrollment, expected date of graduation, degrees and awards received, and most recent previous institutions attended by the student. Some or all of this information may be published in directories such as a student directory; an electronic student directory; a sports program; the Lasell intranet (MyLasell); the Lasell University website; or other campus publications.

A student has the right to refuse to permit the designation of any or all of the categories of personally identifiable information as directory information, except to school officials with legitimate educational interest and government agencies. A school official is defined as 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 as its agent to provide a service instead of using University employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such a 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 responsibilities for the University.

If a student decides to withhold disclosure of directory information, a Request to Prevent Disclosure of Information needs to be completed within three days of his/her registration, which states the desire not to permit the designation of one or all of the categories of directory information. The decision to withhold the disclosure of directory information remains in effect for one academic year and needs to be renewed annually, if so desired.

With regard to external inquiries, the Registrar's Office will verify directory information, unless advised to the contrary by the student as indicated above. "Verify" means to affirm or deny the correctness of the information. The University will not provide corrections for inaccurate information. All non-directory information, which is considered confidential, will not be released to outside inquiries without the express consent of the student except under the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). However, the University will verify financial awards and release data for government agencies.

5. Right to file a Complaint
Complaints regarding violations of the rights accorded students under this policy should be directed to the Registrar. (Complaints failing resolution internally may be filed directly with the Department of Education, 330 Independence Avenue, Washington, D.C. 20202.)