In compliance with Section 438 of the General Education Provisions Act
(as amended) entitled "Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act," (FERPA)
the following constitutes the campus's policy which instructs students
in the procedures available to provide appropriate access to personal
records, while protecting their confidentiality.
definitions and principles contained in the FERPA guidelines are specifically
adopted in the policy:
- "Student" is defined as one who has attended or is attending
the University of Illinois at Springfield and whose records are in the
files of UIS.
- "Education records" do not include files which are:
- Retained by individuals which are not accessible to any other
person except a substitute faculty/staff member.
- Law enforcement records maintained by campus police.
- "Public or directory information," information which is
available to the public, is limited to:
- Name, date and place of birth, and hometown
- University Identification Number (UIN)
- Address(es), electronic address (e-mail), and telephone number(s)
- Classification (freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, graduate level,
- Campus attendance site
- College and fields of study: major(s), minor(s), concentration(s),
- Participation in recognized university activities and sports, including height, weight, and position of athletic team members
- Dates of attendance (including full or part-time status) and date
- Degrees, honors, awards, certificates anticipated or received
- Previous educational institution(s) attended
- "Record" means any information or data recorded in any
medium, including but not limited to handwriting, electronic, print,
tapes, file, microfilm, and microfiche.
B. Directory information may be released freely unless
the student files the appropriate form requesting that all public information not be released. This form is available in the
Office of Records and Registration.
C. Students may have one or more of the following records:
admissions, cumulative academic records, health, accounting/financial,
financial aid, credentials/placement, student insurance and disciplinary.
These may be maintained by one or more of the offices and one or more
of the administrative officers listed below:
|Career Development Center
||Vice Chancellor, Academic Affairs
|Housing & Residential Life
|International Student Services
|OBFS (Business Services)
|Records and Registration
||Vice Chancellor, Student Affairs
|USFSCO (Cashier Operations)
D. Some colleges and departments may maintain
records separately. A list of colleges and departments which
have separate records, their location, and person responsible for the
record may be obtained from the office of the dean of the college
in which the department is located.
E. The privacy of all records may be broken at a time
of emergency defined by the following considerations:
- The seriousness of the threat to health or safety.
- The need for access to the record in meeting the emergency.
- Whether the person requesting the records is in a position to deal
with the emergency.
- The extent to which time is of the essence in dealing with the emergency.
Prior consent to disclosure of information from student education records
will not be required when notice is made to appropriate parties in connection
to an emergency, where knowledge of the information is necessary to protect
the health or safety of the student or individuals involved. Our campus
considers parents or other emergency contacts as "appropriate parties" to
be notified in emergency situations. For instance, if a student living
in a residence hall is transported to a hospital due to a life-threatening
situation, every reasonable effort would be made to notify the appropriate
individuals as soon as possible.
Students are not subject to our control or supervision when they live
and work off-campus. However, if we learn of an emergency involving one
of our students, a reasonable effort will be made to notify the appropriate
individuals in the event of an emergency situation.
Any release will be narrowly tailored considering the immediacy, magnitude,
and specificity of information concerning the emergency. Such an exception
is limited to the period of the emergency and generally will not allow
for a blanket release of personally identifiable information from a student's
Questions related to any release of educational record information should
be directed to the Registrar in the Office of Records and Registration.
Requests dealing with the release of information in the event of an emergency
should especially be directed to the Registrar.
F. A student's record is open to the student, with
the following exceptions:
- Confidential letters of recommendation placed in files prior to
January 1, 1975.
- Confidential references or other documents subject to waivers signed
by the student relinquishing the right of access to the document.
- Record of parents' financial status.
- Employment records kept in the normal course of business which relate
exclusively to persons as employees and are not used for any other
- Medical, psychiatric, or similar records created or maintained by
a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional
acting in such capacity and in connection with the treatment of the
student, provided, however, that such records may be personally reviewed
by a physician or other appropriate professional of the student's choice
or as otherwise provided by Illinois law.
officials with a legitimate interest in a student's education records
may access those records without the student's consent.
- "School officials" shall mean any person who is a trustee,
officer, agent, or employee of the institution. This includes faculty,
department or unit head, dean, chief academic, business, and student
affairs administrators, the Chancellor, the President, a trustee, the
custodian of institutional records, the alumni administrator, legal
counsel, the financial aid administrator, administrators charged with
maintaining education records, the staff and subordinates of the foregoing,
others authorized by the Chancellor or the President, a person employed by or under contract with the institution to perform a special task, and students
when serving on an institutional committee or as a student worker,
to the extent the foregoing persons are acting within the course and
scope of their employment and authority.
- "Legitimate educational interest" shall mean any authorized
interest or activity undertaken in the name of the institution for
which access to an education record is necessary or appropriate to
the proper performance of the undertaking. The following criteria should
guide a school official in determining the need to know and legitimacy
of access to student records:
- The official must seek the information within the context of the
responsibilities that he/she has been assigned;
- The information sought must be used within the context of official
university business and not for purposes extraneous to the official's
area of responsibility;
- The information to be accessed must be relevant and necessary
to the accomplishment of some task or to making some determination
within the scope of university business.
- Disclosure to a school official having a legitimate educational
interest does not constitute institutional authority to transmit, share,
or disclose any or all information received to a third party.
- It is the responsibility of the records custodian to assess the
legitimate educational interest or need to know of the request and
to require proper identification if necessary. When doubt is raised
by a records custodian about an individual's educational interest or
need to know in having access to specific information, the issue shall
by decided by the Provost in consultation with the Registrar.
H. Normally, education records other than directory
information can be released, or access given, to third parties (i.e.,
anyone not the student or a school official) only at the written request
of the student.
- However, personally identifiable records of students may be released
without the consent of the student:
- To parents or guardians of dependent students, as currently defined
in section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954.
- To those representatives of the federal government and the state
who are identified in FERPA.
- To state and local officials or authorities to which such information
is specifically required to be reported or disclosed pursuant to
state statute adopted prior to November 19, 1974.
- To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, educational
agencies or institutions for the purpose of developing, validating,
or administering predictive tests, administering student aid programs,
and improving instruction, if such studies are conducted in such
a manner as will not permit the personal identification of students
and their parents by persons other than representatives of such organizations
and such information will be destroyed when no longer required for
the purpose for which it is conducted.
- To accrediting organizations in order to carry out their accrediting
- In compliance with a judicial order, or pursuant to any lawfully
issued subpoena, provided the student is notified of all such orders
or subpoenas in advance of compliance therewith.
- To custodians of records and other record-maintenance personnel
while performing the record-keeping function. To determine eligibility,
amount, or conditions of financial aid or to enforce the terms and
conditions of financial aid for which the student has applied or
- To officials of another institution where the student seeks or intends
- To an alleged victim of any crime of violence of the results of
any disciplinary proceeding conducted by the institution pertaining
to that crime.
- As of January 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education's FERPA regulations expand the circumstances under which education records and personally identifiable information (PII) contained in such records - including Social Security Numbers, grades, or other private information - may be accessed without consent. First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities ("Federal and State Authorities") may allow access to student records and PII without consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is "principally engaged in the provision of education," such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution. Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to education records and PII without consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when we object to or do not request such research. Federal and State Authorities must obtain certain use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they authorize to receive a student's PII, but the Authorities need not maintain direct control over such entities. In addition, in connection with Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, State Authorities may collect, compile, permanently retain, and share without a student's consent PII from education records, and they may track participation in education and other programs by linking such PII to other personal information about a student that they obtain from other Federal or State data sources, including workforce development, unemployment insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant student records systems.
- The final results of campus disciplinary proceedings may be released
without the consent of the student to a) the victim of a violent crime
or nonforcible sex offense regardless of the outcome of the disciplinary
proceeding, and b) to anyone, where the accused was found to have violated
the campus rules and policies and the proceeding involved a violent
crime or nonforcible sex offense. [The name of the accused may be disclosed
but the name of the victim or witness will not be disclosed without
prior written consent.]
- Information regarding any violation of any federal, state, or local
law or of any campus rule or policy governing the use or possession
of alcohol or a controlled substance, may be released to a parent or
legal guardian of a student if a) the student is under the age of 21
and b) the campus has determined that the student has committed a disciplinary
violation with respect to such use or possession.
I. UIS has established procedures enabling students
to have access to their records and providing for interpretation and
correction/amendment of records.
- Students have the right to access their records according to the
- The student may have access to his or her educational record by
contacting the appropriate office (see section C and D above) and
providing a signed, written request to the records custodian and,
if requested, photo identification.
- Access is to be granted no more than 45 days from the date of
- The student may obtain copies upon request (for which UIS may charge).
Transcripts from other institutions may be viewed only; they may not be
- The student may request and receive an interpretation of his or
her record from the custodian (or designee) responsible for the maintenance
of the record.
- Students have the right to request to have records corrected that
they believe are inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their privacy
rights. (This provision applies only to correcting a record, not to
changing an underlying decision or action upon which the record is
based; the normal student petition process should be used to resolve
disputes regarding underlying actions or decisions.)
- A student must ask the records custodian to amend the record.
In doing so, the student must identify the part of the record to
be amended and specify why the student believes it is inaccurate,
misleading or in violation of his or her privacy rights.
- The record custodian will decide whether to comply with the request.
If the record custodian does not comply, the custodian will advise
the student of his or her right to a hearing to challenge the information
believed to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the student's
- The student may request a hearing by filing a written statement
with the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. Upon receiving such
a request, the Vice Chancellor will arrange for a hearing and notify
the student, reasonably in advance, of the date, place, and time
of the hearing.
- The Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs will establish a hearing
panel composed of three members of the Hearing Board established
under the Student Code. The provisions of the Student Code are superseded
by the following specific provisions of the UIS FERPA policy.
- The student shall be afforded a full and fair opportunity to present
evidence relevant to the issues raised in the original request to
amend the student's education records. The student may be assisted
by one or more individuals, including an attorney, at his or her
own expense. UIS or its representative may present testimony and
evidence as to why the records should not be amended.
- The hearing panel will prepare a written decision based solely
on the evidence presented at the hearing. The decision will include
a summary of the evidence provided and the reasons for the decision.
- If the hearing panel decides that the record is inaccurate, misleading,
or in violation of the student's right of privacy, it will instruct
the custodian to amend the record and notify the student, in writing,
that the record has been amended.
- If the hearing panel decides that the record is not inaccurate,
misleading, or in violation of the student's right of privacy, it
will notify the student, in writing, that he or she has a right to
place in the record a statement commenting on the challenged record
and/or a statement setting forth reasons for disagreeing with the
decision. The statement will be maintained as part of the student's
education record as long as the contested portion is maintained.
The decision of the hearing panel is final, with no opportunity or
- If a student has a complaint about securing his or her rights under
FERPA, the student may contact the following federal office:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U. S. Department of Education
600 Independence, SW
Washington, DC 20202-4605
For assistance in interpreting and implementing this policy, contact
the Office of Records and Registration.
Departments/programs may develop their own consent forms and should
submit these to the Office of Records and Registration for review and
approval prior to implementation. Students should complete this kind
of form whenever requesting a letter of recommendation or authorizing
the release of their records.
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Last Updated 6/6/2012