SPECIAL EDUCATION & REHABILITATIVE SERVICES
OSEP Policy Documents Regarding the Education of Infants, Toddlers, Children and Youth with Disabilities

CONFIDENTIALITY OF EDUCATIONAL RECORDS

Disclaimer: Letters issued prior to December 3, 2004, may not be consistent with the IDEA, as revised by P.L. 108-446. Letters issued prior to August 14, 2006 may not be consistent with the final regulations for Part B published on that date at 71 Federal Register 46540. Readers are advised to consult with the current statute and final regulations.

Section 607 Reports as published in the Federal Register.

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Letter to Honorable Bill Shuster
August 7, 2007
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter restating the Department's policy that test protocols that do not contain personally identifiable information are not education records under either Part B of IDEA or the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
download files MS Word (43K) | PDF (150K)

Letter to Mr. David A. Anderson
October 13, 2006
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding confidentiality issues raised by IDEA and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act related to the public dissemination of special education due process hearing decisions.
download files MS Word (43K) | PDF (150K)

Letter to Ms. Monique C. Shay
March 28, 2006
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding how the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act applies to the release of education records without parental consent to comply with a court order.
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Letter to Karen S. Feuchtenberger
February 2, 2006
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding whether, under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, a charter school may disclose certain personally identifiable information from the education records of a child with a disability, in the absence of parent consent, to the child's school district of residence in order to obtain an additional State subsidy for children with disabilities receiving special education and related services at the charter school.
download files MS Word (43K) | PDF (314K)

Letter to Mr. Dann Stevens
October 12, 2005
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding the disclosure of education records to the Medicaid agency for reimbursement purposes and clarifying that prior written consent is required under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and Part B of IDEA in order for an educational agency or institution to disclose personally identifiable information about students with disabilities to a state Medicaid agency.
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Letter to Mr. Gary S. Mathews
September 13, 2005
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding provisions in Part B of IDEA that apply to the destruction of records and clarifying when test protocols are considered education records.
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Letter to Dr. Pascal D. Forgione, Jr.
March 2, 2005
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act relating to the designation of directory information and clarifying when parent consent is required for the disclosure to third parties of directory information on students with disabilities receiving services under IDEA.
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Dear Parent letter
August 13, 2004
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding the applicability and scope of hearing procedures under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and Part B of IDEA for parents seeking to challenge the content of the education records of a student with a disability and clarifying that a public agency may not bypass a parent's right to a hearing under FERPA by requiring the parent to request an impartial due process hearing under Part B of IDEA
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Letter to Ms. Amy C. Foerster
February 25, 2004
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter clarifying the requirements under FERPA and the IDEA regarding the release of education records in connection with studies conducted by other agencies or organizations pertaining to autism and other developmental disabilities.
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Letter to Ms. Martha Holloway
February 25, 2004
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter in response to an inquiry regarding immunization records of students, that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 did not apply because the records were education records subject to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and explaining limitations to the ''health and safety emergency'' exception under FERPA.
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Letter to Dr. Allan M. Lloyd-Jones
February 18, 2004
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter clarifying the requirements under FERPA and the IDEA regarding the release of education records in connection with studies conducted by other agencies or organizations pertaining to autism and other developmental disabilities.
download files HTML

Redacted letter
February 12, 2004
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding the state lead agency's child find responsibilities under Part C of IDEA and whether a hospital can disclose information regarding an infant or toddler to a state's lead agency.
download files MS Word (30K) | PDF (216K)

Redacted letter
October 31, 2003
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter clarifying that under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the IDEA, a school system may not release to the parents of a student, for whom a due process hearing has been filed, the names and personally identifiable information of other students (without consent from their parents) that are contained in the student's record.
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Letter to Chief State School Officers
July 2, 2003
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding (1) release of student information to military recruiters under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002 and (2) the process by which parents are notified and have an opportunity to request that this information not be disclosed without their consent, similar to the ''directory information'' provisions under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
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Letter to Mr. Louis A. Tedesco
February 14, 2003
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter clarifying that rights under the confidentiality provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the IDEA vest with the parent or eligible student and that FERPA does not provide for these rights to be vested in a third party that has not suffered an alleged violation.
download files MS Word (25K) | PDF (82K)

Letter to Mr. John J. Tommasini
July 30, 2002
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter explaining that States must resolve complaints filed by non-parent individuals or organizations even if the parent refuses to consent to the disclosure of personally identifiable information about the student; but, in such cases, the state may not disclose personally identifiable information about the student.
download files MS Word (28K) | PDF (117K)

Letter to Honorable C. L. "Butch" Otter
July 29, 2002
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding the right of parents to obtain copies of education records and whether a parent's representative can inspect and review education records.
download files MS Word (32K) | PDF (223K)

Redacted letter
July 18, 2002
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding the creation, retention, and destruction of education records, and records handling and storage.
download files MS Word (31K) | PDF (221K)

Letter to Honorable Roscoe E. Bartlett
December 4, 2001
Topic: Confidentiality of Education Records
Letter regarding the circumstances under which an educational agency can permit the disclosure of education records without prior written parental consent.
download files MS Word (41K) | PDF (140K)

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Last Modified: 02/19/2008