Educational records and Privacy

So you would like to remove something from your child's educational records? That is GREAT! But first, watch this video:





Now you understand your child's privacy rights!

Here are the (not so) magic steps:


1. Write a letter to your school district, requesting a complete copy of your child's educational records. It should look something like this:


Dear Mr. Principal, 

I am requesting photocopies of (students name) file, including all tests, reports, observations, assessments, grades, notes by teachers or other staff members, memoranda, e-mail communication, IEP’s –in short, everything in (students name) school files. In requesting copies from all files, this includes, but is not limited to, all district, SELPA, school cumulative, confidential, attendance, discipline, teacher, other service providers, health files and any electronic files. I understand I have a right to these files under FERPA 20 U.S.C. 1232(g); 20 U.S.C. 121232(h),

Kind Regards,

Parent's Name
Address
Contact Number

2. Take your letter to your child's school. Give them a copy of the letter, and request that the letter be TIME STAMPED. This is important because it shows proof you gave the letter to your child's school. 

3. Ask for a copy of the letter with the time/date stamp on it.  


4. Wait for your child's records to arrive. This should be no longer than 10 business days. If you would like to receive them faster, offer to pick them up.*


5. Now that you have the records, review them. What do they say. Are there things you know you gave to the school that are missing? If so, go back to Step 1. Find records that have your child's social security number. 


6. Time to write another letter. 


Dear Mr. Principal, 

I am the parent of (Child's name) and I am requesting That all references to my child's social security number be removed from my childs educational records, including but not limited, all tests, reports, observations, assessments, grades, notes by teachers or other staff members, memoranda, e-mail communication, IEP’s –in short, everything in (students name) school files. In requesting removal from all files, this includes, but is not limited to, all district, SELPA, school cumulative, confidential, attendance, discipline, teacher, other service providers, health files and any electronic files. I understand I have the right to have this information removed  under FERPA 20 U.S.C. 1232(g); 20 U.S.C. 121232(h),

Kind Regards,

Parent's Name
Address
Contact Number

7. Repeat Step 2 and 3. 


8. Wait 30 days, and yes, then write another letter


Dear Mr. Principal, 

I am the parent of (Child's name) and I am requesting to VIEW my childs educational records, including but not limited, all tests, reports, observations, assessments, grades, notes by teachers or other staff members, memoranda, e-mail communication, IEP’s –in short, everything in (students name) school files. In requesting to VIEW  all files, this includes, but is not limited to, all district, SELPA, school cumulative, confidential, attendance, discipline, teacher, other service providers, health files and any electronic files. I understand I have the right to VIEW my child's educational records under FERPA 20 U.S.C. 1232(g); 20 U.S.C. 121232(h),

Kind Regards,

Parent's Name
Address
Contact Number

9. By this time all references to your child's social security number should be removed. If not, Go back to Step 6 and point out each page that has your child's social security number. In your next letter, offer to sit next to them with a sharpie to assist them in finding EVERYTHING. 

10. Relax and know you your child's social security number is once again secure, 


*Districts may attempt to charge for copies of your child's educational records. If this happens to you, and you are unable to afford the cost, notify the the District that "the cost would limit you from accessing your child's records." If the cost limits you from accessing your child's records, the District is required to waive the fee.