Undergraduate Catalog 2020-2021

Student Academic Records – Undergraduate and Graduate

(The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act - FERPA)

SECTION A: Student Academic Records

The Registrar has a master roster of all students which lists high school grades, SAT scores, etc. Faculty members may examine student records on request to the Office of the Registrar.

After appropriate training and with the approval of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, faculty members may access student records via computer on the campus network.

SECTION B: Confidentiality of Student Records

Piedmont College complies with all requirements of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 and all amendments thereto. Complete information is available in the Office of the Registrar and on the web at www.piedmont.edu/registrar.

The law defines student education records to include “records, files, documents, and other materials which contain information directly related to a student and are maintained by a university or by a person acting for a university.” Within 45 days of receiving a request, universities must allow students to inspect those education records. Excluded from the definition of student education records are records made about students by teachers and administrators for their own use and not shown to others.

Confidential letters of recommendation or evaluations which were in the records prior to January 1, 1975, need not be made available to students. For letters after that date, the law allows students to waive rights of access if the letters have to do with admission, employment, or honors, if the letters are used only those purposes, and if students are told, on their request, the names of all letter writers. No student or applicant may be required to execute a waiver.

Students have the right to challenge the contents of their educational records and to secure correction of inaccurate or misleading information. Students may insert into their records a written explanation respecting the content of such records. Students may challenge a grade in their records only on the ground that it was inaccurately recorded, not that it was different than the instructor ought to have recorded.

Teachers, administrators, and similar professional personnel (in the same institution) may look at the record if they have a “legitimate educational interest.”

The university may transfer information to other educational institutions in which the student intends or seeks to enroll or is already enrolled so long as the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer, and/or is in connection with a student’s application for, or receipt of, financial aid, and to public officials enumerated as follows:

  1. State and local officials to whom state law in effect on November 19, 1974, required information to be reported.
  2. Organizations like ETS and CEEB in connection with developing, validating, or administering predictive tests, administering student aid programs, and improving instruction.
  3. Accrediting organizations in order to carry out their accrediting functions.
  4. Parents of a student who is a dependent for income tax purposes.
  5. Appropriate persons in the case of health and safety emergencies.

Directory information may be released without the consent of a student unless the student specifically asks that prior consent be obtained. Requests for non-disclosure will be honored for only one academic year; therefore, authorization to withhold directory information must be filed annually in the office of the Registrar. Directory information includes a student’s name, telephone listing, email address, date and place of birth, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weights and heights of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, the most recent previous educational institution attended by the student; and a university must publish a list of what it designates as directory information and give each student a reasonable period of time to ask that any and all such information not be released without prior consent.

Other than in the exceptions listed, or in the case of directory information, or in responding to judicial process, employees of a university may not release personally identifiable information in education records or allow anyone access to those records, unless the student has given written consent specifying records to be released, the reasons for such release, and to whom, and a copy of the released records is furnished to the student.

Educational agencies and institutions are permitted to disclose personally identifiable information from students’ education records, without consent, in connection with a health or safety emergency. Under the health and safety emergency exception, universities will be able to contact anyone, including parents, potential victims, a student’s previous schools, and law enforcement authorities if that would help diffuse or assess the danger of imminent harm to the student or others. The college will be required to record the articulable and significant threat that formed the basis for the nonconsensual disclosure; they must also record the parties to whom information was disclosed. This document becomes part of the education record and will be subject to FERPA’s inspection, review, amendment, and nondisclosure requirements. No information concerning a student’s education record may be disclosed over the telephone to anyone, even to the student.

Photo/Video Release Agreement

Piedmont College uses photographic, video, and digital images taken of students on College property and at College events, as well as quotes provided by students, in publications, advertisements, promotional materials and audiovisual productions associated with marketing and student recruiting.

Currently enrolled students may request not to be photographed or videotaped by sending written notification to the Registrar by October 1 of the fall semester and February 15 of the spring semester.

Failure to request in writing not to be photographed or videotaped demonstrates approval for the College to use images in its marketing and student recruitment materials.