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Student Privacy (FERPA)

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (Buckley Amendment) is a federal law that limits the amount of information that can be released about students without their specific written permission.

Employment at Boise State University requires, as a term of employment, compliance with the policies of Boise State University; the rules, regulations, and procedures of the Idaho State Board of Education; and all local, state, and federal laws. Faculty and staff are required to review FERPA and sign a FERPA CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT. The FERPA Confidentiality Agreement is completed online as part of the training.

To access Online FERPA training  use your Boise State username and password.

Note

When you complete the online FERPA training, the FERPA Confidentiality Agreement is completed online as part of that training.

Standard practice is that faculty and staff members do not release information about a student to anyone outside the university without first consulting the Registrar’s Office—even a parent, sibling, family member, etc.

The maximum information the university can release on a student who has not requested privacy to someone outside the university is:

  • Email address
  • Date of birth
  • Dates of attendance
  • Full-time/Part-time status (based on 12 credit hours)
  • Mailing address and telephone number
  • Class standing (freshman, sophomore, etc.)
  • Major and minor plans
  • Degree(s) earned and date degree was earned

According to Policy 2250, Boise State University reserves the right to withhold information when, in its judgment, the interests and welfare of the individual, University, or both are not served by the release of information. In other words, while we have the option to release directory information (except where students have requested privacy), we reserve the right to not release.

You may not release the following information to anyone outside the University without the student’s specific written permission (this includes parents, spouses, the police, even Campus police, etc.). This information can be obtained by subpoena to the Registrar:

  • Courses students have taken
  • Location of courses they are currently enrolled in
  • Grades and GPA’s
  • Parent’s name and address
  • Student number or social security number
  • Gender
  • Credit hours earned
  • Probation/Dismissal status
  • Previous institutions attended
  • Holds (service indicators)
  • Student account information
  • Financial aid or veteran’s status
  • ACT or SAT test results
  • Etc.

If a student has requested PRIVACY, the FERPA blind FERPA Blind will appear on the panel in PeopleSoft. This means a student has requested privacy, and you may release nothing about this student without their specific written permission or subpoena.

When communicating with students about their records, you need to take precautions. You must make a reasonable attempt to verify that students are who they claim to be. This applies to in-person, phone and email exchanges. An exception exists for inquiries received from a Boise State University email account.

  • In-person: Before divulging information about a student’s record, ask for photo ID from that student. If the student does not have photo ID, ask the student for at least one of the following: Student ID, SSN, birth date, phone number, or address. If you remain unsure about a student’s identity you should ask for answers to a combination of the above.
  • BroncoMail: Since students must use their usernames and passwords to access their BroncoMail accounts, BroncoMail is considered “secure” by the University. You can assume that inquiries received from a student’s BroncoMail account are from the student. No further verification is needed.
  • Other email or phone: Before divulging information about a student’s record, ask the student for one of the following: Student ID, SSN, birth date, phone number, or address. If you remain unsure about a student’s identity you should ask for answers to a combination of the above.

When in doubt, contact the Registrar’s Office for guidance at (208) 426-4249.