Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) - Student Records
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974
The following notice and information are provided by McHenry County College to advise its students of their rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA).
FERPA establishes the rights of students to inspect and review their education record; provides that personally identifiable information will not, with certain exceptions, be disclosed without the students' permission; provides for guidelines for the correction of inaccurate or misleading data through informal or formal hearings; grants the right to file complaints with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) office concerning alleged failures by the institution to comply with the Act; and makes provision for notice to the students concerning their rights.
Inspect and Review Educational Records
Students may access their records by providing a signed, written request to the Office of Registration and Records. Copies of educational records (not originals) may be obtained upon request.
MCC will not release to any individual or agency, nor permit access to, the educational records of a student, other than directory information, without the student’s written request. The following student information is designated as "Directory Information" and may be disclosed or released by MCC at its discretion:
- major field of study
- dates of attendance
- enrollment status
- degrees and awards received
- the most recent educational agency or institution attended by the student
- participation in officially recognized activities and sports
- height and weight of members of athletic teams
To have all directory information withheld, the student must give written notice, in person, to the Office of Registration and Records.
Amend Educational Records
Students may request that their educational records be changed if the student believes the information is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their privacy rights. Students should provide a written request to the Director of Registration and Records, clearly identifying the part of the education records they want changed and specifying why it is believed to be inaccurate or misleading. If the college decides not to amend the record as requested, the student has a right to a formal hearing on the matter.
Release of Information
Students may sign a Release of Confidentiality form in the Registration Office giving MCC permission to give information to any individual that the student designates.
Alleged FERPA Violation
The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:
Family Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605
Please be aware that ‘College officials of MCC’ are defined as all college employees, as well as contractors, consultants, volunteers, members of the Board of Trustees, student employees, students serving on an official committee, scholarship donors (for the sole purpose of evaluating scholarship recipients), and other outside parties providing services and functions for the college.
Education records may be disclosed to college officials without prior written consent if that college official has a legitimate educational interest. Legitimate educational interest means that the information or records are relevant and necessary to accomplish a task or determination AND the task or determination is a responsibility required for the person's employment or is a subject matter for the person's employment responsibility.
If an institution does not release all the requested student recruiting information as part of its "directory information" policy under FERPA (or has a policy of disclosing no "directory information"), the institution must nevertheless honor the request from a military recruiter for student recruiting information on students who have not "opted-out", even if that information would not be available to the public under FERPA. Because this information is requested exclusively for military recruiting, a special opportunity for a student to decline the release of student recruiting information is not necessary or appropriate. More information on the Solomon Amendment.
Student Optional Disclosure of Private Mental Health Information Act
Pursuant to Illinois' Student Optional Disclosure of Private Mental Health Information Act, a student has the right to authorize the College, in writing, to disclose his or her private mental health information to a person of the student's choosing using the Student Optional Disclosure of Private Mental Health Information Form. For additional information, please visit the Student Optional Disclosure of Private Mental Health Information policy page. Please be advised that consistent with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, 20 U.S.C. § 1232g and its regulations at 34 CFR § 99.36, the College may disclose a student's private information to persons who need to know that information in the event of or to avert a health or safety emergency, even if those persons have not been designated by the student on his or her Student Optional Disclosure of Private Mental Health Information Form.