Student Records and Privacy

The college’s practices with respect to disclosing educational records comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which affords students the following rights with respect to their education records:

  1. Students have the right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the college receives a request for access. Students should submit written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect to the Dean of Students. St. Olaf will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time where the records may be inspected in the dean of students office. Additional information on students’ rights to review and examine their education records is available in the dean of students office.
  2. Students have the right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading. Students may ask St. Olaf to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading by contacting the dean of students office. Students requesting an amendment of their education records should do so in writing, clearly identifying the part of the record they want changed and specifying why the student believes the record is inaccurate or misleading.
    • If St. Olaf determines that the student’s request to amend the record is not warranted, the college will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when noticed of the right to a hearing.
  3. Students have the right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosures without consent.
    • One exception which permits disclosure of personally identifiable information without consent is the disclosure to college officials with legitimate education interest. These officials include persons employed by the college in an administrative, supervisory, academic, or research or support staff position (including but not limited to St. Olaf public safety personnel and health staff); persons or companies with whom St. Olaf has contracted (such as attorneys, auditors or collection agents); persons serving on the Board of Regents; or students serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting a college official in performing his or her tasks.
    • A college official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fill his/her professional responsibility.┬áSt. Olaf may also disclose education records without consent to officials of other schools in which a student seeks or intends to enroll, upon the request of the other school.
    • St. Olaf may also disclose ‘directory information’ without students’ consent. Directory information means information contained in education records which would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Such information may include a student’s name, place and date of birth, local and home addresses and telephone numbers, parents’ names, previous school attendance, dates of attendance at St. Olaf, major fields of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports (and for athletes, height and weight), and degrees and awards received. A student may prevent directory information from being disclosed by notifying the director of residence life in writing that any or all of the information described above should not be released without the student’s prior consent. Requests to prohibit the release of directory information can be made by contacting the Director of Residence Life in suite 126 of the Administration Building, mailing address: 1520 St. Olaf Avenue, Northfield, MN 55057-1098, phone: 507-646-3011. Requests to keep directory information out of the printed St. Olaf College Phone Directory┬ámust be received by July 31st each year.
  4. Students have the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the college to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and the address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue Southwest
Washington, DC 20202-4605

The registrar maintains the academic records of all students. These records contain such information as grades, credits, academic transcripts of college work taken at other institutions, petitions regarding academic matters, pre-registration, and current course schedules and changes in registration. Official student academic transcripts are available only upon written request of the student. Telephone requests cannot be accepted.

St. Olaf College will release or disclose educational information to parents about their son or daughter only with the student’s written consent or upon the parents providing written certification that the son or daughter is a legal dependent under the Internal Revenue Code. The appropriate forms are available in the dean of students office for parent or student signature.

Related Link:
St. Olaf FERPA Policy