Student Right to Privacy
The federal government has passed legislation to guarantee that your student records are treated with appropriate care and confidentiality. We at Western Seminary have high standards regarding your right to privacy. Please see below for an explanation of your rights.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:
The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the Seminary receives a request for access.
A student should submit to the Registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The Registrar will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.
A student who wishes to ask the Seminary to amend a record should write the Registrar, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.
If the Seminary decides not to amend the record as requested, the seminary will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s 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.
The right to provide written consent before the Seminary discloses personally identifiable information from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
The Seminary discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the Seminary in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position; a person or company with whom the Seminary has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using seminary employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, 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 a record in order to fulfill professional responsibilities for the Seminary. Upon request, the Seminary also discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the Seminary to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is: Family Policy Compliance Office; U.S. Department of Education; 400 Maryland Avenue, SW; Washington, DC 20202-5901
Notice Regarding Directory Information
Western Seminary designates the following student information as public or “Directory Information.” Such information may be disclosed by the Seminary for any purpose, at its discretion: name, student ID number, spouse name, campus mailbox, postal address, telephone number, email address, program of study, photograph, dates of attendance, degrees conferred, honors recognition, home state or country, and previous institutions attended.
Currently enrolled students may withhold disclosure of any item of information under FERPA, as amended. To withhold disclosure, written notification must be received in the Student Services office within the first two weeks of each semester. Forms requesting the withholding of Directory Information are available in the Student Services office and on the website. Request for non-disclosure will be honored by the institution for only one academic year; therefore, authorization to withhold directory information must be filed annually.