Bennett County School District FERPA

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. 1232g: 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal Law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children’s education records. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are “eligible students”.

  • Parents or eligible students have the right to inspect and review student’s education records maintained by the school. Schools are not required to provide copies of the records unless for reasons such as a great distance, it is impossible for parents or eligible students to review the records.
  • Parents of eligible students have the right to request that a school correct records, which they believe, are inaccurate or misleading. If the school decided not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student then has the right to a formal hearing. After the hearing, if the school still decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student has the right to place a statement with the record setting forth his or her view about the contested information.
  • Generally, schools must have written permission from the parent or eligible student in order to release any information from a student’s education record. However, FERPA allows schools to disclose those records, without consent, to the following parties under the following conditions (34 CFR 99:31):
    • School officials with legitimate educational interest;
    • Other schools to which a student is transferring;
    • Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes;
    • Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student;
    • Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the school;
    • Accrediting organizations
    • To comply with a judicial order of lawfully issued subpoena
    • State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State Law
  • Schools may disclose, without consent, “directory” information such as student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, honors and awards, and dates of attendance. However, schools must tell parents and eligible students about directory information and allow parent and eligible students a reasonable amount of time to request that the school not disclose directory information about them.
  • Schools must notify parents annually about their rights under FERPA
  • The actual means of notification (special letter, inclusion in a PTA Handbook, student handbook, or newspaper/newsletter article) is left to the discretion of each school.

If a parent believes that the school has violated FERPA by improperly disclosing personally identifiable information from his or her child’s education records, the parent may complete a FERPA complaint form that should include the following specific information: the date the alleged improper disclosure occurred or the date the parent learned of the disclosure; the name of the school official who made the disclosure, if that is known; the third party to whom the education records were disclosed; and the specific nature of the information disclosed.

Bennett County School District parents can contact any BCSD administrator for more information on FERPA.

You may also review FERPA regulations, frequently asked questions, and other information regarding FERPA at the below website:


You may also write for more guidance at the following address:

Family Policy Compliance Office

US Department of Education

400 Maryland Avenue, SW

Washington, DC 20202-8520