Student Privacy and Directory Information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 protects the privacy of a student's educational records- as print or electronic documents- by placing limits on who may have access to the records, what information may be shared or disclosed, and how that information may be used. Charter Oak State College complies with FERPA and has strict policies and procedures in place governing student records.

Students who do not wish to have their directory information disclosed may select that a Confidentiality Hold be placed on their records. Students may do this themselves at any time by filling out the Directory Opt Out form. Under FERPA, students have the right to inspect and review their own student records. All requests must be made in writing and filed with the Registrar’s office.


Q: "Why can't you tell me information about my son/daughter/spouse?"
A: The College is bound by FERPA to protect student information unless we are given written consent in person, by the student to do otherwise. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause and we encourage you to have your student contact us to obtain the information directly themselves.
Q: "What if my son/daughter/spouse cannot give me written permission to speak with the college?"
A: Unless the College has a Consent to Disclose form on file, we will not be able to help you.

Annual Notice

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) Notice and Directory Information Policy

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:

1. The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the College or University receives a request for access.  Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official,written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The College or University official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.  If the records are not maintained by the College or University official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

2. The right to request amendment of an education record that the student believes is inaccurate.   Students may ask an appropriate College or University official to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate, misleading or a violation of the student's right to privacy. However, FERPA is not intended to provide a process to question substantive judgments that are correctly recorded. Consequently, FERPA amendment requests do not allow a student to contest a grade in a course because the student believes that a higher grade should have been assigned.

To request amendment of an education record, the student should write to the official, clearly identifying the part of the record he or she wants changed and specifying why he/she believes it is inaccurate. The institution will notify the student of the decision. If the institution decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, a College or University official will advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

3. The right to provide written consent before the College or University discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. FERPA permits disclosure without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials who have a legitimate educational interest. A “school official” is a person employed by a College or University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person serving on the Board of Regents; an employee of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system office; or, a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee. A school official also may include a volunteer or contractor outside of the College or University who performs an institutional service or function for which the College or University would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the College or University with respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the College or University.
Upon request, the College or University also discloses education records to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll without the prior consent of, or notice to, the student.

4. The right to refuse to permit the College or University to release Directory Information about the student, except to school officials with a legitimate educational interest and others as indicated in paragraph 3 above. To do so, a student exercising this right must notify the University's or College's Registrar, in writing. Once filed, this notification becomes a permanent part of the student's record until the student instructs the University or College, in writing, to remove it. A student may exercise his or her right to opt out of Directory Information, prohibiting disclosure of the student's information without the student's consent as noted in section 3, except however, that pursuant to the Solomon Amendment, military recruiters must be provided the same access to student information as is provided to nonmilitary recruiters.

5. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Colleges to comply with the requirements of FERPA.

The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

Office of the Chief Privacy Officer
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20202-4605

FERPA also permits disclosure of education records without consent in connection with, but not limited to:

  • To comply with a judicial order or a lawfully issued subpoena;
  • To appropriate parties in a health or safety emergency;
  • In connection with a student's request for or receipt of financial aid, as necessary to determine the eligibility, amount or conditions of the financial aid, or to enforce the terms and conditions of the aid;
  • To certain officials of the U.S. Department of Education, the Comptroller General, to state and local educational authorities, in connection with certain state or Federally supported education programs;
  • To accrediting organizations to carry out their functions;
  • To organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the College or University;
  • The results of an institutional disciplinary proceeding against the alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence to the alleged victim of that crime with respect to that crime.

Directory information as defined in the policy of the Board of Regents.

Directory Information Policy

Acknowledging that Directory Information is FERPA protected information that may be disclosed at the discretion of a College or University, it is the policy of the Board of Regents for Higher Education for the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities that disclosure of
Directory Information is within the sole discretion of the College or University.  Colleges and Universities may disclose Directory Information without the prior consent of the student only as provided herein.

The Board of Regents for Higher Education has designated the following as Directory Information:

For purposes of access by school officials of the Colleges and Universities governed by the Board of Regents for Higher Education, the following is designated as Directory Information:

Student's legal name
Permanent mailing address Month and day of birth Photographs
Student identification number, User ID, or other unique identifier
Email address
Telephone number
University or College previously attended or currently attending
Dates of attendance
Full vs. part-time student status
Academic awards & honors
Class standing/year
Major, minor, concentration and/or program of study
Degree(s)/Certificate(s) candidacy
Degree(s)/Certificate(s) earned Previous Institutions attended Graduation expected/completion dates
Previous institutions attended
Graduated expected/completion dates

For purposes of access by military recruiters only, the following is designated as Directory Information (Student Recruiting Information):

Student's legal name
Permanent mailing address
Student's email address (issued but the institution)
Telephone number
Place of birth
Class standing/year
Major and/or program of study
Degrees received
Most recent educational institution attended

For purposes of participation in any recognized activity or sports, the following is designated as Directory Information:
Student's preferred name
City and State of Residence
Dates of attendance
Class standing/Year
Recognized activity or sport
Team performance statistics
Team position
Photos and videos
Athletic awards & honors
Height and weight of athlete

For purposes of disclosure to/access by the general public, the following is designated as Directory Information:

Student's preferred name
Permanent mailing address
Dates of attendance
Major, minor, concentration and/or program of study
Degree/Certificate candidacy
Degree(s)/Certificate(s) earned
Academic honors & awards
Full vs. Part-time status
Anticipated graduation date
Graduation date
Charter Oak State College-College email address