Privacy was once taken for granted in public education, but now through the 1974 law, Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act it is pushed to the forefront of the minds of every educator in the United States (Cossler, 2010). This law has paved the way for many lawsuits regarding privacy of student’s records, which have left teachers scared, undereducated and unaware of certain regulations of the law. FERPA laws provide protections for students, but also allow access of all student records to the student’s custodial parents, which in some situations has cause problems and in some cases have specifically brought clarifications of the law. Has the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act provided the much needed privacy for students or created an overboard policies?
The history of the FERPA Act began in 1974 when the act became the law; up to that time there was very little legislation on privacy within schools (Groves & Groves, 1981). Senator Buckley of New York was concerned with the lack of privacy within schools; the Buckley Amendment was enacted on August 21, 1974 (Groves & Groves, 1981). The two hugely significant impacts of the amendment is 1) people are required to be informed of their rights. 2) Helps educators reflect on their record and document policies in order to avoid conflicts with federal law (Groves & Groves, 1981). There have been many cases since the Buckley law, which have specified regulations within schools, which have affected both state and district policies.
The Peoria Unified School District Board Policy states, “Within the first three (3) weeks of each school year, the District will publish in a District communication a notice to parents and eligible students of their rights under the FERP...
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..., 2013, from http://lp.ctspublish.com/asba/public/lpext.dll?f=templates&fn=main-hit-h.htm&2.0
Bennett, A., & Brower, A. (2001). ’THAT’S NOT WHAT FERPA SAYS!’: THE TENTH CIRCUIT COURT GIVES DANGEROUS BREADTH TO FERPA IN ITS CONFUSING AND CONTRADICTORY FALVO V. OWASSO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT DECISION. Brigham Young University Education & Law Journal, 2, 327.
Cossler, C. (2010, April 1, 2010). Privacy Concerns: The Effects of the Latest FERPA Changes. School Buisness Affairs, 76(3), 22-24.
Groves, S. L., & Groves, D. L. (1981). Professional Discretion and Personal Liability of Teachers in Relation to Grades and Records. Education, 101(4), 335-340.
Lomonte, F. D. (2010). Ferpa Frustrations: It’s Time for Reform. Chronicle Of Higher Education, 56(35), A56.
White, L. (2013, January 1, 2013). Don’t Like Ferpa? Change the Law. Chronicle of Higher Education, Vol. 59(18).
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