Confidentiality and Disclosure Requirements Under FERPA and IDEA (EDU540F)

Presented By: Melanie Dunn
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Event Details
  • Pre-recorded Webinar
  • 60 minutes
  • Thu, May 22, 2014
Event Description

Follow this Expert Guidance to Craft a Policy that Keeps You Out of Court

Public school districts and educational institutions that accept federal education funding are mandated by the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) to do two things:  maintain and safeguard the confidentiality of personally identifiable student information, and provide access to the education records containing such information in accordance with the rights afforded to parents and students under the law.  In addition, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) contains similar rights and protections to parents and students regarding the contents, maintenance, and disclosure of education records for special education students.

While IDEA and FERPA have set strict guidelines regarding the safeguarding and maintenance of personally identifiable student information, and the parent’s access to it, effectively incorporating this guidance into school policy and successfully communicating them to parents is where many institutions struggle.

This session will provide educators and professionals who work with special education students with a comprehensive overview of the basic confidentiality and disclosure requirements under FERPA and IDEA, and discuss the most common legal issues that arise in navigating these laws.

In this session, you will:

  • Learn how FERPA and IDEA define education records, including the many exceptions to this definition and when they apply
  • Understand the elements of a clear, concise, and effective education records confidentiality and disclosure policy, and the most common mistakes made by school districts in formulating their own policies
  • Develop strategies for handling the thorniest issues that arise from parent and third party requests for education records, as well as requests for amendment of records
  • Learn how legal requirements concerning student confidentiality address record disclosure issues in student and employee disciplinary matters, campus emergencies, and students impacted by medical and mental health issues
  • Review the most important federal education policy guidance and cases on education records and student privacy issues

Session highlights:

  • Comprehensive knowledge of the two-fold purpose of FERPA to provide rights and protections to parents and students concerning access to and disclosure of confidential student information
  • Understanding of the intersection between FERPA and IDEA with regard to personally identifiable student information in special education records, as well as the rights of parents and students to access and request amendment of such information
  • Strategies for handling parent complaints to the U.S. Family Policy Compliance Office (FPCO) concerning alleged violations of FERPA by public school districts

Who should attend:

  • Education officials and school administrators responsible for articulating and implementing their institutions' education records policies;
  • Attorneys and educational advocates who regularly work with parents with parents or with public and private schools the must comply with FERPA.

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About Our Speaker(s)

Melanie Dunn
Melanie Dunn is an attorney with a Connecticut-based practice focused on the representation of parents in special education, student discipline, and related education law matters. Prior to her current role as an advocate for parents of children with special needs, Ms. Dunn represented boards of education in matters inv... More info


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