The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act or FERPA (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) provides certain rights for parents regarding their children’s education records. FERPA gives these rights to custodial and noncustodial parents alike, unless there is a court order, legally binding document, or State law that specifically provides to the contrary. When a student reaches 18 years of age or attends an institution of postsecondary education at any age, he or she becomes an “eligible student,” and all rights under FERPA transfer from the parent to the student. The document linked below has parents as the target audience, this guide is intended to discuss parents’ rights under FERPA. Under FERPA, the term “parent” means a parent of a student and includes a natural parent, a guardian, or an individual acting as a parent in the absence of a parent or a guardian.

A Parent Guide to Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)