Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

In accordance with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 USC 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), SUNY New Paltz has adopted the following regulations to protect the privacy rights of its students. Copies of this statement as well as the law are available upon request in the office of the Chief of Staff and online at

Annual Notification
Students will be notified of their FERPA rights annually in the Undergraduate Student Advising Handbook, the Schedule of Classes online at, and through

Record Retrieval Companies and/or Law Firms Requesting Student Records
Please note that any organization requesting records on behalf of a current or former student, must provide the Office of Records & Registration with a completed FERPA release form . The form should indicate what type of records are permitted to be released; to whom (i.e., specifically, the organization making the direct request on the student’s behalf); the purpose of the request; and it should be signed by the current or former student.

Even if the organization provides an alternative release on behalf of the current or former student, the College's FERPA release form is still required.

Court-ordered Subpoenas
Please note that court-ordered subpoenas for student records should be directed to the President's Office, Haggerty Administration Building, 902. Consistent with FERPA, we will notify students of subpoena demands and provide them with an opportunity to respond to the court before records are provided, to the extent they exist.

For purposes of this policy, SUNY New Paltz has used the following definitions:

Student - any person who attends or has attended SUNY New Paltz.

Education Records - any record (in handwriting, print, tapes, film, electronic, or other medium) maintained by SUNY New Paltz or an agent of SUNY New Paltz, which is directly related to a student, except: Desk notes by faculty not shared with others and in the sole possession of the maker; University police records created by or for, and maintained by university police; Medical or psychological records maintained for diagnosis and treatment; Parents’ financial statements (including FAFSA) (Note: under FERPA, these ARE educational records, although the College need not permit the student to review them); Information coming to the college after the student has left the institution.

School Official - A school official is a person employed by SUNY in an administrative, supervisory, academic, or support staff position including law enforcement personnel, SUNY System Administration, and health staff or another employee carrying out his or her job responsibilities, including officially recognized volunteers acting in their official capacity for the college. This includes student employees and officially recognized student volunteers, whether full time or part time, paid, unpaid or earning academic credit. Such students will be trained and will sign a statement of understanding regarding the College's FERPA policy. A person or a company under contract to SUNY or acting as an agent for SUNY, to provide a service instead of using College employees or officials, such as an attorney, auditor, consultant or collection agent, is also considered a school official, as is a person serving on the Board of Trustees or a student on an official committee. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is performing a task related to the student’s education, a task related to the discipline of the student, or providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student’s family such as health care, counseling, job placement, or financial aid.

Right to Inspect Education Records
Students may inspect, review, and if necessary, amend their education records upon written request to the appropriate record custodian (see Appendix I for listing and inspection/amendment procedures).

Right of College to Refuse Access
SUNY New Paltz reserves the right to refuse to permit a student or applicant access to inspect the following records:

Refusal to Provide Copies of Records
SUNY New Paltz reserves the right to deny copies of official transcripts [or copies of records not required to be made available under FERPA] if the student has unpaid financial obligations to the College.

Fees for Copies of Records
The fee for copies of education records is included in the current Tuition and Fee Schedule (identical to current processing cost of student transcript).

Disclosure of Education Records
SUNY New Paltz will disclose information from a student’s education record only with the written or electronic consent of the student. At its discretion, New Paltz may release information without consent, under the following circumstances:

Record of Requests for Disclosure
SUNY New Paltz will maintain a record of certain external requests for, and/or disclosures of, information from a student’s education records. The record will indicate the name of the party making the request, any additional party to whom it may be re-disclosed, and the legitimate interest the party had in requesting the information. The record of requests may be reviewed by the eligible students. The College is required to maintain this record of requests for disclosure with other education records of the student for as long as those records are maintained.

Directory Information
SUNY New Paltz designates the following items as Directory Information:

The College may disclose any of these items without prior written consent of the student. Students may opt out of the release of this information by completing the directory information checklist under My.Privacy/Directory Settings in

Parental Rights Under FERPA (See Policy on Parental Notification)


Appendix I
Inspection, Review and Amendment of Education Records

Students have the right to inspect and review their educational records. Students should submit to the appropriate record custodian a written request which identifies as precisely as possible the record or records to be inspected.

The record custodian, or an appropriate college staff person, will make the needed arrangements for access as promptly as possible and will notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. Access must be given within 45 days or less from the receipt of the written request. When record information contains information about more than one student, the student may inspect and review only the specific information about the requesting student.

Education Record Custodians at SUNY New Paltz include (records and list are not exhaustive):

Amendment of Education Records
Students may ask the College to amend a record they believe is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their right of privacy. Following are the procedures for amendment of records:

Departmental Releases
Except as otherwise described in this policy, permission must be granted by you in order for the Office of Student Accounts and/or Records & Registration to discuss your student invoice, financial account and/or academic records with any third party, including parents or guardians.

Students can also allow faculty and advisors to communicate with a parent or third party through and authorization to release waiver.

Student Accounts and/or Records & Registration release waiver

Students who wish to share information about the their financial account or educational records by the Office of Student Accounts and/or Records & Registration submit an electronic waiver. This waiver does not apply to faculty, advisors or any third party. Follow these instructions. Once submitted, students will receive an electronic pin code to share with parents. Parents will use this pin code when communicating with the Office of Student Accounts and/or Records & Registration.

Faculty/Advisors release form

Authorization to Release Information Form must be completed submitted to the faculty/ advisor department. (Students use this form to allow faculty/advisors to release information to another party such as a parent. Please be specific about the type of information to be released and to whom it should be released.)

Right to File a Complaint
Students are afforded the right to file a complaint with the US Department of Education concerning alleged failures by SUNY New Paltz to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office administering FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
US Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-4605

For more information about how to use the electronic release waiver please contact:

Stella Turk
Records and Registration
SUNY New Paltz
500 Hawk Drive
New Paltz, NY 12561

Phone: 845-257-3105
Fax: 845-257-3103

Questions about this policy can be addressed to:

Shelly Wright
Chief of Staff
President’s Office
SUNY New Paltz
1 Hawk Drive
New Paltz, NY 12561

Phone: (845) 257-3291
Office: HAB 902
Fax: 845-257-3389

(Revised 10/13)