The U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Policy Compliance Office (“FPCO”), which investigates complaints alleging violations of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”), found that a school district did not violate FERPA when it denied a parent’s request to amend her child’s disciplinary records.

In this case, the parent alleged that the school district denied her an opportunity to amend records relating to two disciplinary incidents involving her child. In its letter to the parent, the FPCO explained that while FEPRA generally affords parents the right to amend inaccurate or misleading information in their children’s education records, that right is not unlimited and parents may not use FERPA’s amendment provisions to challenge substantive decisions made by school officials, such as grades or disciplinary actions. Because the parent was seeking to amend substantive matters contained in her child’s disciplinary records, the school district had no obligation to consider the parent’s request or provide her with a hearing after denying her request. The FPCO noted a parent has the right to insert a statement in the student’s record setting forth the parent’s views, which must remain with the record for as long as it is maintained.

Contact Jennifer Mueller with your questions regarding student records and student record challenges.