The University of Oregon Student Records Policy and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) provide guidelines for maintaining the confidentiality of education records and monitoring the release of information from those records.
Definition of Education Records
Education records are those records directly related to a student and maintained by the University or by a party acting for the university. Some examples: records of grades, coursework, records indicating progress toward a degree, student financial account records.
Once a student has reached age 18 or is attending the university, all FERPA rights belong to the student. Parent access to education records is limited to information classified as Directory Information under the University of Oregon Student Records Policy. The following information is classified as Directory Information:
- A student’s full name
- Mailing and permanent address(es) and telephone number(s)
- Email address(es)
- The fact that the student is or has ever been enrolled
- Enrollment status (e.g., full-time, half-time or less than half-time)
- Class level
- Dates of attendance
- Degrees, honors or awards received
- Cumulative credit hours
- Participation in officially recognized activities
- For graduate teaching fellows, status as a graduate teaching fellow and teaching assignment
Parental access to other education records is allowed when the student provides the university with a signed and dated release specifying the records to be disclosed, stating to whom they should be disclosed and the purpose of the disclosure. Each instance of release of non-Directory Information requires its own separate and specific written authorization to release.
Family Emergency Situations
During the 8:00-5:00 work week, if a parent, guardian, or other family member needs assistance in contacting a University of Oregon student in an emergency, they should contact the student’s complex director in the student’s residence hall if the student lives in University Housing, or the Office of the Dean of Students, (541) 346-3216, if the student lives off campus. Staff members in those offices have systems in place and work closely with the Department of Public Safety to help families connect with their students in emergency circumstances. For emergencies after 5:00 PM (or if parents or families are unable to connect with a staff member), the Department of Public Safety at (541) 346-6666 can assist.
Public Health or Safety Emergencies
Disclosure of information from education records is allowed under the University of Oregon Student Records Policy and FERPA in connection with a health or safety emergency if the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or others. Factors the University considers in determining whether to make the disclosure include:
- the seriousness of the threat to health or safety;
- the need for the information to meet the emergency;
- whether the individual(s) to whom the information is released is in a position to deal with the situation; and
- the extent to which time is of the essence.
- Full text of the University of Oregon Student Records Policy
- Family Policy Compliance Office (FPCO)
- More information about the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
- More information about the Family Policy Compliance Office (FPCO)