The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords parents and students over 18 years of age (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect to the student’s education records.
- The right to inspect and review the student’s educationnrecords within 45 days after the day the district receives a request for access. Parents or eligible students should submit to the school principal a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The principal will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
- The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA. They should write the school principal, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the district decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the district will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise them of their right to a meeting with a district employee who is not directly interested in the outcome. Additional information regarding the meeting procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when they are notified of their right to the meeting
- The right to provide written consent before the school discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the district as an administrator, faculty member, staff member, member of the Board of Directors, or others acting on their behalf who the superintendent has determined to have a legitimate educational interest in obtaining access to information in a student’s education records. This may include outsourced law enforcement and security units contracted with the school district. A legitimate educational interest exists when the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the district will disclose education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
The right to inform the district that the parent or eligible student does not want the district’s designated directory information, as defined below, to be released to the public. To object to the designation and release of certain student records as directory information, the parent or eligible student must notify the principal in writing, by August 17, 2020 (or two weeks from the date of enrollment in the district if such enrollment occurs after August 17, 2020), of the information not wished to be released. This objection to the release of directory information must be renewed annually.
The primary purpose of directory information is to allow the district to include information from your child’s education records in certain school publications. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- A playbill showing a student’s role in a drama production
- The annual yearbook
- Academic recognition lists
- Graduation programs
- Sports activity sheets such as for wrestling, showing weight and height of team members
- Newspaper articles or television news stories
- Podcasts or videos posted on the district website
- Athletic or activities team photos or class photos
- Website articles
Directory information means information contained in an education record of a student that would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. The Ankeny Community School District has designated the following student information as directory information:
- Student’s name
- Curriculum (major field of study)
- Year in school
- Participation in recognized organizations, activities and sports
- Weight and height of members of athletic teams
- Degrees, awards and honors received
- The most recent educational institution attended by the student
- Photographs, audio recordings and video recordings of the student
- Date of attendance at the school district (general periods of time during which an individual attended or was enrolled in an educational agency or institution)
- Student work
Any information not designated by the district as directory information will be considered an educational record under FERPA and may not be released to the public without parental or eligible student consent. Two federal laws require local school districts receiving assistance under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) to provide military recruiters, upon request, with three directory information categories – names, addresses and telephone listings – unless parents have advised the school district that they do not want their student’s information disclosed to the military recruiters without their prior written consent.
If you do not want the district to disclose directory information from your child’s education records without your prior written consent during the 2020-21 school year, you must notify the district in writing by August 17, 2020.
The district may share information contained in a student’s record with officials of the juvenile justice system if such information will assist in their ability to serve the student.
These laws are: Section 9528 of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 7908), as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-110), the education bill, and 10 U.S.C. 503, as amended by section 544, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002 (P.L. 107-107), the legislation that provides funding for the Nation’s armed forces.
If your parents have no objections – If there are no objections to use of your information as defined above, no further action is necessary and you do not need to fill out the opt-out form.
If your parents object – If your parents object to use of information as defined above and you do not want directory information included in class lists, yearbooks, school programs, brochures, athletic programs, newspaper articles, and other publications such as noted above, please fill out the opt-out form. The form should be returned to school no later than August 17, 2020 for the 2020-21 school year.