Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

While FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children’s education records. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are "eligible students."

  • Generally, postsecondary institutions must have written permission from the eligible student in order to release any information from a student’s education record. However, FERPA allows schools to disclose those records, without consent, to the following parties or under the following conditions (34 CFR § 99.31):
  • School officials with legitimate educational interest;
  • Other schools to which a student is transferring;
  • Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes;
  • Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student;
  • Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the school;
  • Accrediting organizations;
  • To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena;
  • Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and
  • State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State law.

FERPA requires universities to provide students with annual notification of these rights. Auburn University's annual notification appears in the Auburn University Bulletin. Students who suspect that a FERPA violation has occurred, should contact the Vice President for Student Affairs (Suite 3248 Auburn University Student Center; 334-844-8880) or they can contact the Family Policy Compliance Office within the U.S. Department of Education.

For more information regarding Auburn University and FERPA, please click here:

Division of Student Affairs | Student Center Suite 3248 Auburn , AL 36849 | (334) 844-1304 | Fax: (334) 844-2354 | E-mail:
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