Student Information Privacy
Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, the following data is designated as directory information and may be made public unless the student desires to withhold it:
- Student’s name
- Official email address
- Degrees & academic honors received
- Dates of attendance
- Major field of study
- Military service status
- Student Type
- Mailing address
- Most recent previous educational agency or institution attended
- Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
Any undergraduate or graduate student wishing to withhold all of this information should, within 10 days after the first class day, complete the Directory Information Release Restriction Form. Students may fax this form to the Office of the Registrar at 254-968-9389 or submit the form to the Registrar’s Office located in the Administration building. Students may email the Office of the Registrar or reach us via phone at 254-968-9121 for information regarding the privacy and release of personal information.
After this information is entered, a message block will appear on the monitor screen and indicate that a student’s records are confidential. “Confidential” will also appear in the top left-hand corner of the screen when a student’s records are pulled up.
Update Personal Information
Official notification and accurate reporting of a student’s name and mailing address is necessary for proper identification of student records, and the mailing of correspondence, grade reports, graduation information, etc.
- Currently, enrolled students who have changed their names should fill out the Permanent Record Change Form. Proper documentation (marriage certificate, divorce decree, etc.) must be submitted with the permanent record update form as required by the Registrar’s Office.
- Currently, enrolled students may change their mailing address by logging into myGateway.
FERPA stands for Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, commonly known as FERPA. It is a federal law designed to protect the privacy of educational records, to establish the right of students to inspect and review their educational records and to provide guidelines for the correction of inaccurate and misleading data through informal and formal hearings.
FERPA allows the release of specified items but does not require it. Items that may be released are called directory information. Tarleton State University has classified these items as directory information: students name, mailing address, major field of study, military service status, dates of University attendance, degrees and academic honors received, student type, classification, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended.
Items that can never be identified as directory information are a student’s social security number or institutional identification number, financial information, tuition and fees balance or statement, race/ethnicity, citizenship, nationality, gender, grades, GPA, or class schedule.
A student educational record is any record, with certain exceptions, maintained by an institution that is directly related to a student or students. This record can contain a student’s name, or students’ names, or information from which an individual student, or students, can be personally (individually) identified. These records include files, documents, and materials in whatever medium (written, print, monitor, screen, tapes, disks, film, microfilm, microfiche or notes) that contain information directly related to students and from which students can be personally identified.
If ever in doubt whether information may be released, school officials should not release any information. Tarleton employees may email the Office of the Registrar or call us at 254-968-9121 to determine if a student has given written consent to restrict their directory information as well as determine if the information is an educational record.
A legitimate educational interest shall mean any authorized interest or activity undertaken in the name of the University for which access to an education record is necessary or appropriate to the proper performance of the undertaking.
School officials have a legitimate educational interest if the information requested is necessary for that official to (a) perform appropriate tasks that are specified in his/her position description or in the performance of regularly assigned duties by a lawful supervisor; (b) fulfill the terms of a contractual agreement; (c) perform a task related to a student’s education; (d) perform a task related to the discipline of a student; (e) provide a service or benefit relating to the student or student’s family, such as health care, financial aid, job placement, or former student-related activities; or (f) perform a task related to the health and safety of the campus community. Information relating to a student’s educational record as well as directory information should not be released to a third party if that party does not have a legitimate educational interest.
Parents wishing to gain access to their son or daughter’s academic information must file a Certification of Dependency Form with the Office of the Registrar before they can have access to this information. Until this form is filed, parents are not entitled to this information.
In post-secondary institutions, the student “owns” his/her educational record from the first enrollment. Age is not considered in determining ownership of a student’s academic record.
Students have a right to file a complaint with the U. S. Department of Education concerning a possible failure of a school to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202
Tarleton State University is dedicated to providing a safe and secure campus environment where meaningful education can take place. Information listed in the Tarleton State University Annual Security Report has been prepared to ensure Tarleton State University is in compliance with the federal guidelines under the Clery Act.
Services for Students with Disabilities
The policy of Tarleton State University is to comply with the American with Disabilities Act and other federal, and local laws. Applicants for admission are not required to disclose disability status in the admission process. Information related to a disability that has been released to the Center for Access and Academic Testing is not used in the admission review process.
Students with disabilities may request appropriate accommodations by contacting the Center for Access and Academic Testing in the Mathematics building, Room 201, at 254-968-9400, or [email protected].
Formal accommodation requests cannot be made until the student has been admitted to Tarleton. However, students are encouraged to make initial contact well in advance of this time to clarify documentation requirements and to allow time to arrange possible accommodations.