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The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Confidentiality of Student Records

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords eligible students certain rights with respect to their education records. (An "eligible student" under FERPA is a student who is 18 years of age or older or who attends a postsecondary institution.) These rights include:
  1. The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days after the day Centralia College receives a request for access. A student should submit to the registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The registrar will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.

  2. The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student's privacy rights under FERPA.

    A student who wishes to ask Centralia College to amend a record should write the registrar, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.

    If Centralia College decides not to amend the record as requested, the College will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student's right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

  3. The right to provide written consent before Centralia College discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

    Centralia College discloses education records without a student's prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by Centralia College in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person serving on the board of trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee. A school official also may include a volunteer or contractor outside of Centralia College who performs an institutional service of function for which the school would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the school with respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist 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 Centralia College. Please see below for the full list of the disclosures that Centralia College may make without consent.

  4. The right to prevent disclosure of directory information.

    Centralia College routinely publishes and discloses directory information about students to various requestors. At Centralia College, directory information consists of the following: name, address, telephone listing, e-mail address, date and place of birth, photographs, advisor, field of study, participation in officially recognized sports and activities, weight and height of athletes, dates of attendance, grade level, full- or part-time status, honor roll, degrees, awards and scholarships received, most recent previous school attended, and dates of employment. Also, prior military experience and level of education may be provided to representatives of the Department of Defense for recruiting purposes.

    Students who choose to have Centralia College not release their directory information, must notify the registrar in writing using the form available in the Enrollment Services Office. Students should be aware that requesting Centralia College to withhold directory information may prevent other colleges and employers from receiving information that may benefit the student.

  5. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Centralia College 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, SW
    Washington, DC 20202
FERPA permits Centralia College to disclose PII from students' education records without obtaining prior written consent of the student if the disclosure meets the following criteria or circumstances:
  • To other school officials, including teachers, within Centralia College whom the school has determined to have legitimate educational interests. This includes contractors, consultants, volunteers, or other parties to whom the school has outsourced institutional services or functions.
  • To officials of another school in which the student is concurrently enrolled or concurrently receives services.
  • To officials of another school where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student's enrollment or transfer.
  • To authorized representatives of the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or State and local educational authorities, such as a State postsecondary authority that is responsible for supervising the university's State-supported education programs. Disclosures under this provision may be made in connection with an audit or evaluation of Federal- or State-supported education programs, or for the enforcement of or compliance with Federal legal requirements that relate to those programs. These entities may make further disclosures of PII to outside entities that are designated by them as their authorized representatives to conduct any audit, evaluation, or enforcement or compliance activity on their behalf.
  • In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received, if the information is necessary to determine eligibility for the aid, determine the amount of the aid, determine the conditions of the aid, or enforce the terms and conditions of the aid.
  • To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, Centralia College in order to: (a) develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; (b) administer student aid programs; or (c) improve instruction.
  • To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions.
  • To parents of an eligible student if the student is a dependent for IRS tax purposes.
  • To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena.
  • To appropriate officials in connection with a health or safety emergency.
  • Information Centralia College has designated as "directory information."
  • To a victim of an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense. The disclosure may only include the final results of the disciplinary proceeding with respect to that alleged crime or offense, regardless of the finding.
  • To the general public, the final results of a disciplinary proceeding if Centralia College determines the student is an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense and the student has committed a violation of Centralia College's rules or policies with respect to the allegation made against him or her.
  • To parents of a student regarding the student's violation of any Federal, State, or local law, or of any rule or policy of the school, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance if Centralia College determines the student committed a disciplinary violation and the student is under the age of 21.