The Family Educational
Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 is a federal law that grants to
students the right to inspect, to obtain copies, to challenge,
and to a degree control the release of information contained in
his or her education records. The Act and Regulations are very
lengthy, and for that reason SMU has issued guidelines that are
available to students in the Division of Enrollment Services.
Policy 1.18 of the University Policy Manual, accessible on SMUs
Intranet, also discusses this law.
In general, no personally
identifiable information from a students education record will
be disclosed to any third party without written consent from the
student. Several exceptions exist, including these selected examples:
(1) Information defined by SMU as directory information may be
released unless the student sends a written request to the Registrar
that it be withheld; and (2) information may be released to a
parent or guardian if the student is declared financially dependent
upon the parent or guardian as defined by the Internal Revenue
Service Code. A parent or guardian wishing to have access to a
students education records must provide to the University Registrar
a completed Declaration of Student Dependency form, available
in the Registrars Office.