JRA-E Notification of Rights Under FERPA

NOTIFICATION OF RIGHTS UNDER FERPA

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. They are:

A. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the South Portland School Department 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.

B. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate or misleading.

Parents or eligible students may ask South Portland School Department to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. 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 South Portland School Department decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the South Portland School Department will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise them of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.

C. The right to consent to disclosure of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

One exception that permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the school unit as an administrator, supervisor, instructor or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a person serving on the school board; a person or company with whom the school unit has contracted to perform a special task (such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his/her tasks.
A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official need
to review an education record in order to fulfill his/her professional responsibility

Upon request, the South Portland School Department discloses education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.

D. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the South Portland Schools to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
Washington, DC 20202-4605

Additional Notifications under FERPA

 The South Portland School Department may make public at its discretion personally identifiable information from the education records of a student without parental consent if that information has been designated as directory information by the school. This school unit has designated the following information as directory information: the student’s name, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of athletes, honors and awards received.

 Such information will not be disclosed if the parent of the student informs the school unit in writing within 10 days of the first student day of the school year or within 10 days after enrollment, that such information is not to be designated as directory information with respect to that student. Any such notice should be sent to the Superintendent of Schools at the following address: 130 Wescott Road, South Portland, Maine 04106.

 Federal law permits military recruiters and institutions of higher learning to request and receive the names, addresses and telephone numbers of high school students upon request, unless the student’s parent or eligible student notifies the school unit that he/she does not want such information released. Such information will not be disclosed if the student’s parent or eligible student notifies the school unit, in writing, that such information should not be released without his/her written consent. Any such notice should be sent to the Superintendent of Schools at the following address: 130 Wescott Road, South Portland, Maine 04106.

 Under Maine law, the South Portland School Department shall not publish on the Internet without written parental consent (or 18-year old student’s consent) any information, whether directory or otherwise, that identifies a student, including but not limited to the student’s full name, photograph, personal biography, e-mail address, home address, date of birth, social security number and parents’ names.

 The South Portland School Department maintains a more extensive policy and procedure concerning education records. This policy and procedure can be obtained by contacting the Superintendent of Schools.

 The Maine Legislature passed a law, Chapter 448, in 2009 that authorizes the Maine Commissioner of Education to require local school units to request that parents provide students’ social security numbers to the school. Your compliance with this request is completely voluntary. We must request that you provide your child(ren)’s social security number, but you are not required to provide the number to us. The social security numbers will be used by the Department of Education to create a “longitudinal data system” which will link data about the student’s educational history to data about the student’s endeavors after leaving school, such as earnings, educational attainment, and choice of career. There will be no adverse consequences for your child if you decline to provide the social security number. Your child will still be enrolled in school, and he or she will have all the same rights and privileges of every other student in our schools. If you are a student aged 18 or over, you have the right to decide whether to allow use of your social security number. No child’s social security number may be used for longitudinal data purposes without the parent’s or 18-year-old student’s consent.

Legal Reference: 20 U.S.C. § 7908
34 CFR § 99.7
20-A MRSA § 6001

Adopted: July 8, 2002
Revised: March 2003
Revised: April 14, 2003
Revised: August 30, 2010