Student Records and Your Rights
The Johnston Community School District maintains records on each student in order to facilitate the instruction, guidance and educational progress of the student. Student records containing personally identifiable information shall be kept confidential at collection, storage, disclosure and destruction stages. Student records may be maintained in the Central Administration Office or housed by the building in which the student last attended.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords parents and students over 18 years of age (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect to the student’s education records. They are:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the District receives a request for access.
- The right to contest placement of a controversial record in the student’s education records.
- 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. Student records may be disclosed in limited circumstances without parental or eligible student’s written permission. This disclosure is made on the condition that the student record will not be disclosed to a third party without the written permission of the parents or the eligible student. This disclosure may be made to the following individuals or under the following circumstances; to school officials within the school district whom the Superintendent has determined have a legitimate educational interest; to officials of another school district in which the student wishes to enroll, provided the other school district notifies the parents the student records are being sent and the parents have an opportunity to receive a copy of the records and challenge the contents of the records; to the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Secretary of Education or state and local educational authorities; in connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received if the information is necessary to receive the financial aid; to organization conducting educational studies and the study does not release personally identifiable information; to accrediting organizations; to parents of a dependent student as defined in the Internal Revenue Code to comply with a court order or judicially issued subpoena; in connection with a health or safety emergency; or, as directory information.
- The right to inform the District that the parent or eligible student does not want the District’s designated directory information, as defined below, to be released to the public. Student directory information designed to be used internally to assist certified personnel is not accessible to the public. Student pictures on the web, student work on the web, student directory and general student information will be provided to the public for school related activities and/or educational opportunities without parents’/guardians’ consent unless the parents/guardians have notified the administration September 15 of each year that they do not want their minor student’s information published without their consent. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18.
Directory information include, but not be limited to, the student’s name, photograph or likeness, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by the student, and other similar information. (Board Policy 506.1E2)
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the district to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:
Family Policy and Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605
FERPA regulations now allow a district to disclose education records to contractors used by a district to perform a service or function of the District. Johnston contracts with Street Smarts to provide driver education. Parents and students need to be aware that with this change Johnston schools will be releasing a student’s name, address, phone number and eligibility for a full or partial waiver of school fees to Street Smarts as based on qualification for free or reduced lunch. If a student qualifies for a fee waiver, their fees for drivers education will be reduced or waived. A parent has the right to opt out of this disclosure to Street Smarts, but would then be responsible to pay 100% of the cost of the driver education course. Forms to opt out of this release are available at the administrative office of Johnston High School, Johnston Middle School and the Administrative Resource Center.
Student directory information will also be released to military recruiters upon request. Parents and students need to be aware that they may opt out of the release of this information to military recruiters by so marking on the Release of Information form, which is available at any administrative office.