- Basic Policy Regarding Disclosure of Information from Educational Records
- Identification and Description of Student Information
- Access to Records
- Challenging Contents of a Student's Educational Record
- Destruction of Records
- Right to File Complaints
Southern Illinois University Carbondale, hereinafter referred to as the University, maintains individual records and information about students for the purpose of providing educational, vocational, and personal services to the student. For the purpose of complying with federal regulations regarding the maintenance of confidentiality of student educational records, as required by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, the following policy has been enacted.
A. "Student" is defined as a person who is or has been enrolled at Southern Illinois University in a course of study either on campus or off campus. Solely for purpose of this policy, any student attending Southern Illinois University will be considered to be an adult and to have sole control over the release of his/her information except as provided in this policy. The term "enrolled" is defined as having registered and paid fees into a course of study.
B. "Education records" means those records which are directly related to a student, and are maintained by Southern Illinois University or any subunit or by any party acting for Southern Illinois University. The term does NOT include:
- Personal records of instructional, supervisory, and administrative personnel which are not revealed to other individuals.
- Records of a law enforcement unit of an educational institution which are maintained apart from the education records, maintained solely for law enforcement purposes, and are not disclosed to individuals other than law enforcement officials of the same jurisdiction. For purposes of this policy, the Southern Illinois University Security Office will be treated as an outside agency and will therefore be required to comply with all regulations relating to the disclosure of information from students' educational records, as set forth in the policy.
- Employment records, so long as they are maintained separately from any educational record.
- Records of a physician, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional acting in his or her professional capacity which are used only in connection with treatment and are not disclosed to individuals other than those providing the treatment; Provided, that these records can be personally reviewed by a physician or other appropriate professional of the student's choice.
- Records which contain only information relating to a person after that person was no longer a student at Southern Illinois University, such as alumni files.
C. "Student Information" means any information contained in an educational record as defined in II.B.
D. "Personally identifiable information" includes:
- The name of a student, the student's parents, student's spouse, or other family member.
- The address of the student.
- A personal identifier such as the student's social security number or student number.
- A list of personal characteristics which would make the student's identity easily traceable.
- Other information that would make the student's identity easily traceable.
E. "Directory information" includes:
- Student name.
- Student local address and telephone number.
- Student home address and telephone number.
- Student e-mail address.
- Current and past term status (full-time, part-time).
- Classification (freshman, sophomore, etc.)
- Academic unit.
- Date of attendance.
- Degrees and honors earned and dates.
- The most previous educational agency or institution attended prior to enrollment at Southern Illinois University.
- Participation in officially recognized activity or sport.
- Weight, height, and pictures of members of athletic teams.
- Date of birth.
A. Disclosure not requiring prior consent
- The appropriate recordkeeping office shall obtain the written consent of the student before disclosing personally identifiable information from the records of a student, except in the case of directory information or disclosures to:
- The student himself/herself.
- University personnel who have a legitimate educational need to permit their functioning or research. The sufficiency of the need will be determined by the head of the unit from which the records are sought. Student information supplied to any Southern Illinois University personnel or unit is provided on the basis that it is needed to permit their necessary functioning. All members of the faculty, administration, and clerical staff must respect confidential information about students they require in the course of their work. They are bound by the conditions outlined in this policy statement relative to the release of student information. All institutional personnel should be alert to refer promptly to the appropriate office requests for transcripts, certifications, or other information which that office typically provides. They should restrict their responses to acknowledging, when appropriate, the receipt of requests for student information germane to their sphere of responsibility.
- Officials of other schools or school systems in which the student seeks or intends to enroll, if there is a legitimate need. The sufficiency of the need will be determined by the head of the unit from which the records are sought. A copy of any information sent will be provided to the student upon request.
- Faculty or students conducting student characteristic research providing the research project has written approval of the academic unit executive officer sponsoring the research and providing guarantees are made that no personally identifiable information will be published or released.
- Certain state and federal representatives specified by law for the sole purpose of evaluating and auditing of governmentally funded programs in which the University participates, with the guarantee that the identity of the students will be protected.
- State and local officials as directed by the State Statute adopted prior to November 19, 1974, as approved by University Legal Counsel.
- Organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, state or federal educational agencies or institutions for the purpose of developing, validating, or administering predictive tests, administering student aid programs, and improving instruction, with the guarantee that the identity of the student shall be protected.
- In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or received.
- Accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting function, with the guarantee that the identity of the student shall be protected.
- Appropriate persons in connection with an emergency, if knowledge of such information is necessary to protect the health or safety of a student or other persons.
- Comply with a judicial order or subpoena, but the University should make a reasonable effort to notify the student first. The sufficiency of the order or subpoena will be determined by the University Legal Counsel and that office shall send the required notice to the student.
B. Disclosure Requiring Prior Consent
- Except as listed in A above, all requests for student information other than directory information must be accompanied by a written consent of the student.
- The written consent required by this section must be signed and dated by the student giving the consent and shall include (a) a specification of the records to be disclosed, and (b) the party or parties to whom the disclosure may be made.
- When the disclosure is made pursuant to this section, the appropriate recordkeeping office shall, upon request, provide a copy of the records which are disclosed to the student.
- Student information will not be released to parents of students without the student's permission.
C. Disclosure of Directory Information
Directory information pertaining to students may be released by the University at any time provided that it publish the definition at least once each academic year in the campus student newspaper or other designated publication with wide circulation, and the individual student is given a reasonable period of time to inform the University in writing, through the Registrar's Office, that he/she does not wish such information about himself/herself to be released without his/her prior consent (Request to Restrict Release of Student Information Form). The Registrar's Office will be responsible for identifying or deleting information which the student desires not to be released outside the University and for informing all University recipients of that information that such information is not to be released. The student must request deletion of information each year. The procedural requirements of this section do not apply to the disclosure of directory information from the educational records of an individual who is no longer in attendance at the University. Thus, the University (or appropriate recordkeeping office) is not required to give public notice of the above to former students. All recipients of student information will be bound by this policy. Lists of student information are never knowingly provided to any requesting party for a commercial or political purpose. If a student directory is published, it shall be equally available to all.
The University will not release certain directory information when requested by a party external to the University, if it is deemed that such a release violates federal and/or state regulations. For example, according to the Southern Illinois University Management Act, the University will not release a student's personal identifying information to a business or financial institution that issues credit or debit cards, unless the student is 21 years of age or older.
D. Records of Disclosure Made
Records of disclosure are not required to be kept in the record of a student when the disclosure is initiated by the student himself/herself. The University may disclose personally identifiable information from the education records of a student only on the condition that the party to whom the disclosure is made will not further disclose the information without the student's written consent, except in the case of disclosure of directory information.
The University shall, except for the disclosure of directory information, inform the party to whom disclosure is made of the obligation to receive the student's consent before further disclosure to other parties.
E. Waiver of Right to Inspect and Review Education Records
- The student may waive his/her right to inspect and review education records. The waiver, in order to be valid, must be in writing and signed by the student. The University (or each appropriate recordkeeping office) may not require a waiver of rights but it may request such a waiver.
- If a student has waived his/her right to see confidential letters of recommendation placed in his/her record after January 1, 1975, the waiver will be effective only if: (a) the applicant or student is, upon request, notified of the names of all individuals providing the letters or statements; (b) the letters or statements are used only for the purpose for which they were originally intended, and (c) such waiver is not required by the University as a condition of admission to or receipt of any other service or benefit from the University.
- A waiver may be revoked, but the revocation must be in writing and signed by the student. Revocation of waiver will affect only documents received after its execution.
A. Academic Records
The Registrar's Office retains the official academic record of a student. It is a cumulative history of a student's admission, registration, and academic participation and performance. Certain biographic and demo- graphic information is also kept for identification for enrollment and research-related purposes. For information concerning these records contact the director of the Registrar's Office.
Academic records may also be maintained in academic units, departments, and divisions. For information concerning these records contact the head of the academic unit, department, or division in question. The Office of Institutional Research also maintains some academic records.
B. Financial Records
Offices within the Business area maintain certain financial records which relate to payment and accounting of tuition, fees, and other charges. They also maintain records which record student loans and grants. For information concerning these records, contact the Bursar's Office.
For billing purposes, the Registrar's Office maintains a record of financial aid received and tuition and fees paid. For information concerning these records, contact the director of the Registrar's Office.
The Financial Aid Office maintains records of student receiving loans, grants, and aid along with scholarship information and some academic information. It also maintains records pertinent to student employment including the family financial statement. For information concerning these records, contact the director of the Financial Aid Office.
The Housing Office maintains records of housing accounts. For information concerning these records, contact the director of Housing.
C. Medical/Counseling/Clinical Center Records
The University Health Service maintains medical records of students who have required medical assistances through the student health program. Only information pertinent to the health of the individual is contained therein. For information concerning these records, contact either the administrative director or the medical director of Student Health.
The University Counseling Center maintains records pertinent to services rendered by that office. For information concerning these records, contact the director of the Counseling Center.
The University Clinical Center maintains records pertinent to services rendered by that office. For information concerning these records, contact the director of the Clinical Center.
D. Disciplinary Records
The Office of Student Affairs maintains records of disciplinary action which has been taken against a student with documentation pertaining thereto. That office also maintains only the academic information necessary to permit its functioning. For information concerning these records, contact the director of Student Development.
E. Placement Records
The University Placement Center creates a record for those persons who wish to avail themselves of its services, with student's voluntary participation. This information is distributed to potential employers. It consists of self- completed resumes and various personal references. For information concerning these records, contact the director of the University Placement Center.
A. Right to Inspect or Review Educational Records
- The student has the right to physically review his/her records in the presence of a designated University representative.
- Requests for review may be required to be submitted in writing to the appropriate office.
- That office shall comply with the request within a reasonable time, but in any case, compliance shall be no more than thirty (30) days after the receipt of the request.
- Where necessary, interpretation of the record shall be provided by qualified University personnel.
- Original records cannot be removed from University premises. A copy will be provided if requested, but only if not providing a copy would preclude review of the educational records by the student.
- Copies of transcripts from other educational institutions will be provided only if the original source of those transcripts is no longer available or going to the original source would cause undue hardship as determined by this University.
B. Limitations on Right to Inspect or Review
- The student may not inspect the following records:
- Financial records and statements of their parents.
- Confidential letters or materials placed in records before January 1, 1975 so long as they were solicited with an understanding of confidentiality and are used only for the purpose for which they were written.
- Confidential letters of recommendation and confidential statements of recommendation placed in the education records of the student after January 1, 1975, are subject to the student's right to inspect and review unless the student has signed a written waiver.
- Reports that involve two or more persons may be censored to protect the identity of the other person(s).
C. Administrative Hold on University Records
On occasion it is necessary for a University to place an administrative hold on a student's ability to request a transcript, to register for a subsequent term, to reenter the University after a period of attendance interruption, or to be officially graduated. In cases where an administrative hold has been placed on a student's record, the student may view such records but will not be able to obtain a copy of said record until the administrative hold is removed through the appropriate University channels.
A student has the right to challenge the content of a record on the ground that he/she believes it is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of his/her privacy or other rights and to have inserted in the record his/her written explanation of its contents. Academic grade review procedures are covered in the University Catalog and/or such particular academic unit, department or division and not by this policy.
To initiate such a challenge, the student shall, within sixty (60) days after he/she has inspected and reviewed the record in question for the first time, file with the University office responsible for maintaining such record a written request for correction, on a form specified by the University. Within thirty (30) days following receipt of such request, the head of such office, or his/her representative, shall review the record in question with the student and either order the correction or deletion of such alleged inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise inappropriate data as specified in the request or notify the student of the right to a hearing at which the student and other persons directly involved in the establishment of the record shall have an opportunity to present evidence to support or refute the contention that the data specified in the request are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise inappropriate.
The student shall be given written notice sent to his/her last known address of the time and place of such hearing not less than ten (10) days in advance. The hearing will be conducted by a University representative who does not have a direct interest in the outcome. The student might well challenge the hearing officer. Any disagreement regarding the hearing officer will be resolved by the appropriate Vice President. The student shall have the right to attend the hearing, to be advised by an individual of his/her choice at his/her own expense, including an attorney, and to call witnesses in his/her behalf. The student shall be notified in writing of the decision within ten (10) days following the hearing or within five (5) days of a decision without a hearing. Such decision is final. The decision reached shall be based solely upon the evidence presented at the hearing and shall include a summary of the evidence and reasons for the decision.
(Note: A hearing may not be requested by a student to contest the assignment of a grade; however, a hearing may be requested to contest whether or not the assigned grade was recorded accurately in the education records of the student.)
A. The University may destroy education records when they are no longer necessary, with the following limitations:
- Education records may not be destroyed if there is an outstanding request to inspect and review them.
- Explanations placed in the record by the student and the record of disclosure of information must be maintained as long as the education record to which it pertains is maintained.
A. If the student thinks his or her rights have been violated, he or she should first file a complaint with the head of the office which maintains the records in question.
B. After exhausting all the internal remedies available within the University, if the student still thinks his or her rights have been violated, written complaints can be filed with:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-5920
The office shall notify the complainant and the University of the receipt of the complaint and an investigation will follow.