What is FERPA?

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), as amended, is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records.  It is also known as the Buckley Amendment. Additional information is available by visiting the U.S. Department of Education’s Student Privacy Policy Office (SPPO) website .

In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, known as FERPA, Quincy University sends an annual notification of a student’s rights under FERPA to the campus email address of enrolled students.

Annual Notification of Rights Under FERPA

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords eligible students certain rights with respect to their education records. (An “eligible student” under FERPA is a student who is 18 years of age or older or who attends a postsecondary institution at any age.)  These rights include:

  • The right to inspect and review their education record within 45 days of the day Quincy University receives a request for access.
  • The right to request the amendment of their education records that they believe are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of their privacy rights under FERPA. If you feel there is an error in your record, you should submit a statement to the University official responsible for the record, clearly identifying the part of the record you want changed and why you believe it is inaccurate or misleading. That office will notify you of their decision and advise you regarding appropriate steps if you do not agree with the decision.
  • The right to provide consent before Quincy University discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without student consent (FERPA regulation 34 CFR §99.31). Students can manage their FERPA consent permissions on the Student tab in the myQuincy portal.  Examples of disclosure exceptions include:
    • School officials with “legitimate educational interests.” A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official has a professional need to review your education record in order to fulfill their official responsibilities.
    • Officials of another school where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer.
    • Requests in connection with a student’s application or receipt of financial aid.
    • Parents of a student who have established the student’s status as a dependent according to Internal Revenue Code of 1954, Section 152.
    • Parents of a student regarding the student’s violation of any Federal, State, or local law, or of any rule or policy of the school, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance if the school determines the student committed a disciplinary violation and the student is under the age of 21.
    • Accrediting organizations carrying out their accrediting functions
    • Authorized representatives for audit of federal- or state-supported programs
    • In the case of emergencies, the University may release information from education records to appropriate persons in connection with an emergency, if the knowledge of such information is necessary to protect the health or safety of a student or other persons.
    • Compliance with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena
    • Information the University has designated as Directory Information
    • A complete list of exceptions can be found on the Department of Education website.
  • The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education’s Student Privacy Policy Office (SPPO) concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with FERPA.
    • U.S. Department of Education | Student Privacy Policy Office | 400 Maryland Avenue, SW | Washington, DC 20202-4605

Directory Information

Directory information differs from personally identifiable information.  It is defined as that information contained in a student educational record which would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed.  At its discretion, Quincy University (QU) may disclose directory information to the public without a student’s consent unless they choose to exercise their right to non-disclosure. FERPA requires institutions to define what it considers directory information. Quincy University defines directory information as legal name, home address, hometown, month and day of birth, phone number, academic program(s), participation in officially recognized activities and sports, dates of attendance, QU credentials awarded (including dates), QU honors and awards received, most recent institution attended, weight and height of athletes, and enrollment status.

Restricting Directory Information

To restrict release of directory information, the student (defined as one who is currently attending or previously attended Quincy University) must request, in writing, non-disclosure of their directory information. All requests should be submitted to the Registrar’s Office (1800 College Avenue | Quincy, IL | 62301).  Once a non-disclosure request has been processed, it remains in effect until the student requests, in writing, that the non-disclosure request be removed. Please consider carefully the consequences of a decision to withhold directory information.  If a student has chosen non-disclosure of directory information, Quincy University will refuse any information requests from a third party (e.g. degree verifications, insurance agencies, family members).  Students are encouraged to review their FERPA privacy settings periodically.

Note:  Under FERPA, a student may not use their right to opt-out of directory information disclosures to prevent school officials from identifying the student by name or disclosing the student’s electronic identifier or institutional e-mail address in class.

All requests should be submitted to the Registrar’s Office (1800 College Avenue | Quincy, IL | 62301).

Request for Reference FERPA Release

Students requesting a letter of reference or recommendation from a faculty or staff member at Quincy University must provide a signed release if the information is to contain any details that are considered educational records. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) prohibits an educational institution from releasing confidential, non-directory information about a student without a student’s consent.  Use the Student Recommendation Request FERPA Release form (PDF) to authorize an individual to use your education records as appropriate to provide requested information. Students are required to return the original, signed copy of the release form to the authorized faculty or staff member, prior to obtaining the recommendation.

Additional Information

For additional information on FERPA, please consult the U.S Department of Education website. Questions concerning FERPA should be referred to the Registrar’s Office (1800 College Avenue | Francis Hall, Room 130 | Quincy, IL | 62301 or registrar@quincy.edu).