Educational Institutions FERPA

News & Analysis as of

Federal Government Issues Guidance to Schools on Title IX and Transgender Students

In a move that made headlines across the country, two federal government agencies issued a significant guidance document last week interpreting Title IX's requirements for protecting transgender students' rights....more

Federal Government Provides Schools New Guidance Regarding Transgender Students

Two divisions of the federal government have weighed in on the recent legal controversies surrounding accommodations for transgender students. The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and the U.S....more

Department of Justice and Office of Civil Rights Issue Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students

On Friday, May 13, 2016, the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice released joint guidance entitled Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students (“Guidance”). This guidance is provided pursuant to the Departments’...more

Government Issues New Guidance on Transgender Students

The U.S. Departments of Justice and Education issued a joint Dear Colleague Letter on May 13, 2016, clarifying that Title IX prohibits discrimination based on gender identity, including transgender status. The guidance states...more

U.S. Departments of Justice and Education Issue ‘Significant Guidance’ on Transgender Rights under Title IX

The U.S. Departments of Justice (DOJ) and Education (DOE) have issued a joint “Dear Colleague Letter” (DCL) containing “significant guidance” on how these departments will apply sex discrimination protections under Title IX...more

Before You Upload That Student Photo, Ask: What Would FERPA (Have Me) Do?

It’s Springtime in Chicago again, which means you can count on two things–complaints about the lingering cold weather and the Annual Illinois ASBO Conference, which is going on now in Schaumburg, Illinois. I was lucky enough...more

Proposed IDEA Regulations - Disproportionality

On February 23, 2016 the United States Department of Education (ED) issued its proposed “Equity in IDEA” rule; regulations intended to address the overrepresentation of minorities in special education. The expressed intent of...more

Students Sue University of Central Florida for Data Breach

Recently, students and employees of the University of Central Florida (the “University”) filed a proposed class action lawsuit in Florida federal court against the University alleging that the University failed to adequately...more

Settlement Agreements with Students Are Protected Student Records But Must Be Disclosed in Redacted Form Under Public Records Law,...

What is the responsibility of a public educational institution when it receives a public records request for material that it believes it must keep private under state and federal student records laws?...more

Colleges and Universities Are Prime Cyberattack Targets: What’s Behind the Threat?

When it comes to cyberattack targets, many think of retailers and associated credit card transactions or customer information, or perhaps healthcare providers with their ever-increasing storage and transmission of electronic...more

U.S. Department of Education issues FERPA guidance related to medical information

In conjunction with the new school year, the U.S. Department of Education issued guidance, in the form of a “Dear Colleague” letter, to higher education institutions to remind them of FERPA’s requirements as they relate to...more

Using Student Medical Records: Department of Education Issues New Guidance

When is it legal and proper for higher education institutions to use student medical records other than for a student's healthcare? In answering that question, institutions have to balance students' privacy interests,...more

The ABCs of COPPA Compliance

In today’s environment – when data breaches seem to be in the news nearly every day – the media, regulators and many others are hyper-focused on privacy issues. Schools and educational institutions are no exception when it...more

Federal student privacy law in flux

In recent months, the White House and members of Congress have called for an overhaul of the forty-year old Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) ((20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), which safeguards the...more

FERPA and subpoenas for student records

With some frequency, we receive questions in our practice regarding the interplay between the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) and subpoenas or court orders. Many...more

White House Task Force Publishes Sample Law Enforcement MOU for Sexual Assault Cases

On January 26, 2015, the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault (Task Force) published new guidance on building partnerships between law enforcement agencies and institutions of higher education....more

U.S. Department of Education Issues Guidance to Protect Student Privacy Online

Educational institutions face greater legal exposure given their increasing use of online educational services – and situations where they can both collect and disclose protected information. As a result, these institutions...more

What is the Difference Between FERPA and PPRA? Protecting Student Privacy and Confidential Education Records

Two important federal laws protect the privacy rights of all students: the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, 20 U.S.C. 1232g, “FERPA” and Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment, 20 U.S.C. §1232h, “PPRA.” Both...more

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