The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act passed in 1974 by the United States Congress relates to accessibility and confidentiality of student records. Provisions of the act classify the following as ‘‘directory information’’ that may be released to the public upon request, unless the student has specifically requested that all of the information not be released: name, mailing address, date of birth, fields of study or area of interest, participation in officially organized activities and sports, weight and height of athletic team members, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and most recent previous educational institution attended.
Students not wishing the dissemination of "directory information" without prior consent must submit a written notice to the Office of Admissions and Records stating which of the above items are not to be released to the general public. All other information not listed above that relates directly to the student cannot be released without the student’s written permission.
Under the law, access to student records without the student’s permission is granted under the following circumstances: to teachers, administrators and the like in the same institution who have a legitimate educational interest in the student's record; to other institutions in which the student intends to enroll; to the Comptroller General of the United States; in connection with a student’s application for, or receipt of, financial aid; to organizations such as Educational Testing Service or the College Entrance Examination Board involved in testing programs and student aid; to accrediting organizations; in compliance with judicial order or pursuant to any lawfully issued subpoena.
The college registrar can provide additional information on the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (Buckley Amendment).