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Notification of Rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

August 2021

Dear Parent:

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records.  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 the student’s education records maintained by the school.  Schools are not required to provide copies of records unless, for reasons such as great distance, it is impossible for parents or eligible students to review the records.  Schools may charge a fee for copies.

Generally, schools must have written permission from the parent or eligible students 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 or under the following conditions:

  • 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 or lawfully issued subpoena;
  • Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and
  • State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific state law.

The Ottumwa Community School District may disclose, without consent, “directory” information such as a student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, honors and awards, and dates of attendance.  However, parents and eligible students may request that the school not disclose directory information about their student.  Any parent or eligible student not wanting this information released to the public must notify their school principal IN WRITING no later than September 15, 2021.  This release is good for one year only; you must notify the school each year if you do not want this information released.

Student records are generally located in the school which he or she is attending.  Any exception will be noted in the student’s other records or by the person in charge of record maintenance for each school building.  The school principal is responsible for maintenance of student records. 


Michael McGrory
Superintendent of Schools