The US Department of Education states, “The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. This law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the US Department of Education.” Simply put, parents have certain rights to access and review their children’s educational records. These rights transfer to the student once they turn 18 years old or when they go to college.
Educational institutions have personal information on all students. These records include grades, discipline records, even finances. FERPA makes this information private and gives the student the ability to determine what information can be seen, who can see it, and how long it is available. Directory information is available, but under FERPA the student can choose to have this information locked.
Why Your Business Partners Should Be FERPA Compliant
The school is responsible for any vendor that intentionally or unintentionally misuses or misplaces student information. Consequently, it is crucial for schools to ensure any third party vendor is FERPA compliant. For example, when using a vendor like ShredHub, a Certificate of Destruction is provided after shredding. This certificate serves as a record of proper disposal of student’s records. This removes responsibility from the school and confirms the documents have been destroyed.
Benefits of Document Destruction
✔️Reduces the cost of storage of unneeded records. School records can be destroyed upon graduation and/or when there are no outstanding review requests. To confirm, it is best to review the district guidelines and policies before destruction.
✔️Safeguards data by reducing the risk of identity theft and privacy breaches.
✔️Shredding is one of the top approved methods by FERPA for data destruction.
Take the time to evaluate vendors that you utilize for document destruction and record disposal. Give some thought to if your institution is FERPA compliant and if any third party vendors you work with are compliant. If you have questions regarding proper data destruction or are curious to learn more about our FERPA compliance, complete the below form and we will have a team member reach out to you!