Achieving Community Transformation (ACT) Academy Cyber Charter School’s Parent and Student’s Privacy Rights to Student Information and Education Records
ACT Academy is generally required to obtain a student’s permission or consent before it may release any information from the student’s education record. (Under Federal law, a student receives this right when the student reaches the age of 18. This includes access to a student’s records by others, as well as the right to deny parental access to his/her records.) ACT Academy’s complete Student Records Policy is available to families upon request.
However, information from a student’s education record may be released, without consent, to the following parties under the following conditions—
- school officials, including teachers, who have a legitimate educational interest in reviewing the record;
- 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;
- appropriate officials in case of health and safety emergencies;
- state and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system pursuant to Pennsylvania law; and
- in compliance with a court order or an order of an administrative agency with subpoena power. However, students and parents should be notified of all such orders and the school’s compliance.
In addition, ACT Academy may disclose, without consent, “directory” information, such as a student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, honors and awards, and dates of attendance. However, ACT Academy must tell students about directory information and allow students a reasonable amount of time to request that the school not disclose directory information about them.
ACCESS TO HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS AND INFORMATION ON STUDENTS BY MILITARY RECRUITERS
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and Section 9528 of the No Child LeftBehind Act of 2001, both Federal laws, require that ACT Academy, with certain exceptions, obtain your written consent prior to the disclosure of personally identifiable information from your child’s education records. However, ACT Academy may disclose appropriately designated “directory information” (name, address and telephone listings) to the Armed Forces Military Recruiters without written consent, unless you have advised the School in writing to “opt out” in accordance with School procedures.
If you want to request that ACT Academy NOT disclose your directory information, please write and sign a letter to the school including the statement below.
I have read this statement of my privacy rights to information in my education record and request that ACT Academy NOT disclose any personally-identifiable information from my student’s education records, including what is called “directory information,” without my prior written consent, to any outside person or organization except where the disclosure is to the financial funders and supporters of ACT Academy. (I recognize that ACT Academy relies on the financial funding and support provided by outside organizations for the operation of the school.)
POLICIES AND PROCEDURES REGARDING STUDENT EDUCATION RECORDS AND THE RIGHTS OF PARENTS AND STUDENTS UNDER FEDERAL LAW CONCERNING CONFIDENTIALITY
Achieving Community Transformation Academy (ACT) Cyber Charter School protects the confidentiality of personally identifiable information regarding its exceptional and protected handicapped students in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) and other disability Federal and state laws. Educational records mean those records that are directly related to the student that are maintained by ACT or by an entity acting for ACT. For all students, ACT requires educational records that include, but are not limited to:
- Personally Identifiable Information – confidential information that includes, but is not limited to, the student’s name, name of parents and other family members, the address of the student or the student’s family and other information or personal characteristics that would make the student’s identity easily identifiable.
- Directory Information – information in an education record of a student which would not be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. It includes, but is not limited to, the student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, major fields of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and the most recent previous school or institution attended.
Directory information may be released without parent or student consent. Parents or students have the right to ask the agency to designate any or all of the student’s information as directory information.
However, ACT must obtain parent or student consent before disclosing identifiable information to anyone not entitled to it under law. (Note: a student can take the place of a parent to release information if the student is eighteen years old or attending a secondary institution.) Consent means the parent or student has been fully informed regarding the actual required consent, in their native language or normal mode of communication. They understand and agree in writing to the activity and they understand that consent is mandatory before ACT may disclose identifiable information to anyone not entitled to it under law and may be revoked at any time.
Parents have the right to inspect and review the student’s educational records. ACT will comply with a request to inspect and review educational records without unnecessary delay regarding an IEP or any due process hearing, but in no case more than thirty days after the request has been made. Parents have the right to requires copies of the records. While ACT cannot charge a fee to search for the records, it may charge a copying fee as long as it does not effectively prevent
the parents from exercising their right to inspect and review the records. Parents have the right to appoint a representative to inspect and review their child’s records. If any educational record contains information on more than one child, parents have the right only to inspect and review information relating to their child.
If parents think information in an education record is inaccurate, misleading, or violates the privacy or other rights of their child, they may request amendment of the record. ACT will decide whether or not to amend the record and will notify the parent in writing of the election. If ACT refuses to amend the record, it will inform the parents of their right to a hearing to challenge the disputed information.
Such record hearings will be held within a reasonable amount of time after a parent’s request and the parent shall be entitled to the date, time, and place a reasonable time in advance. The hearing may be conducted by any individual, including a ACT official, who does not have a direct interest in the outcome of the hearing. The parent will have a full and fair opportunity to present evidence at the hearing and may be assisted or represented by one or more individuals including an attorney.