The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 is a federal law that was enacted to protect the privacy of students and their educational records. The intent of the legislation is to protect the rights of students and to ensure the privacy and accuracy of educational information. Educational information refers to any record maintained by an educational institution, including files, documents and materials of any type that contain information directly related to students, and which allows a student to be identified.
Students who are protected under FERPA are those students currently enrolled or formerly enrolled, regardless of their age or status in regard to parental dependency. Students who have applied but have not attended the college and deceased students do not fall under FERPA guidelines.
Eligible students have the right to inspect and review their educational records within 45 days of the day Manhattan College receives a request for access. The eligible student should submit a request to the Registrar and identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The Registrar will make arrangements for access and will notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
An eligible student may also ask the College to amend a record believed to be inaccurate or misleading. If the school decides to not amend the record, the parent or student then has a right to a formal hearing. If, after the hearing, the school still chooses to not amend the record, the eligible student has the right to place a statement on the record commenting on the contested information.
Lastly, a student may formally request that Manhattan College not release directory information on their behalf. This request must be submitted to the Registrar. When this request is made, a notation will be flagged in the MC student information system and every reasonable effort will be made to safeguard the confidentiality of such information.
There are several exceptions to releasing information without a student's written approval. Some examples:
Under FERPA guidelines, a student's record may not be disclosed without written authorization unless the requested information falls under the category of directory information. Manhattan College may disclose information on a student without violating FERPA if it has designated that information as directory information. The following information has been classified as directory information by Manhattan College:
The College uses extreme discretion in releasing any student information to an outside source. While MC is legally entitled to release Directory Information, it generally does not disclose more than deemed necessary. The following items are defined as Personally Identifiable Information and can never be disclosed by the College:
You have the right to request that any or all of your directory information not be released by Manhattan College. You may contact the Registrar with a written and signed notice not later than two weeks of beginning of the semester to withhold the release of any directory information you specify. This request is in effect until you provide written notice to the contrary.
You have the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Manhattan College to comply with the requirements of FERPA at:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
600 Independence Avenue. S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605