Access to Student Records

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records:

  1. A student has the right to inspect and review his or her education records within 45 days of the day the Law Center receives a request for access.  To do so, a student should submit to the Office of the Registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) he or she wishes to inspect.  The Office of the Registrar will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
  2. A student has the right to request the amendment of the education records that the student believes are inaccurate.  To do so, a student should submit to the Office of the Registrar a written request clearly identifying the part of the record he or she wants changed, and specify why it is inaccurate.  If the Law Center decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the Office of the Registrar will notify the student of the decision and 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. A student has the right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.  One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests.  A school official can be a person in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the Law Center has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Directors; or a student serving on an official committee, such as the Committee on Professional Responsibility, or assisting 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 responsibility.
  4. A student has the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the Law Center to comply with the requirements of FERPA.  The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA are: Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20202-5920.

Georgetown University Law Center considers the following information as “directory information,” that is, information that can be made available to the general public: name; address; telephone number; date and place of birth; photographs; parents’ names; major field of study; full-time or part-time program; dates of attendance; expected graduation date; degrees and awards received; and previous educational institutions.  No other items of student information will be released to any person or organizations outside of Georgetown University without the written consent of the student, except for certain categories of outside persons or organizations specifically exempted by federal law.

Under the provisions of FERPA, students have the right to instruct the University to withhold the “directory information” listed above.  To do so, students need to fill out a “Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information” form available at the Office of the Registrar within the first two weeks of the Fall semester in the first year of their matriculation to the Law Center.  Students should consider very carefully the consequences of a decision to withhold “directory information,” which means that the Law Center will not release this information, unless excepted by law. The Law Center assumes no liability for honoring instructions that such information be withheld.