Family Education and Privacy Act (FERPA)

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) afford a student certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:
  • The right to inspect and review their own educational record.

  • The right to seek to amend their own educational record.

  • The student must make a written request to the Director of Admissions and Records at the San Luis Obispo Campus and provide the names of the records they wish to review or amend. The administrator will respond with the timeframe and location for the materials to be reviewed.

  • The right to have some control over the disclosure of information from their education records. One exception that permits disclosure without consent is the disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests.

    • A school official is defined as a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff);

    • a person or a company with whom the College has contracted as its agent to provide service instead of using College employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor or collection agent);

    • a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.

    • A school official has a legitimate interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the College.

  • The right to file a claim with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the College to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5920


Directory Information

At its discretion, Cuesta College may provide "directory information" in accordance with the provisions of the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Directory information is defined as that information which would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Personal identifiers, such as student identification numbers or social security numbers, race/ethnicity, gender, religious preference, grades and GPA are not directory information. Cuesta College has identified the following elements as directory information:

  • Name
  • Field of Study
  • Degrees and Certificates arned
  • Dates of Attendance
  • Level of Enrollment (number of credits)
  • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports

To restrict the release of direction information, a student may submit a Change of Information form and submit to a Registration Center with photo ID.

Electronic Files

FERPA does not differentiate between the medium of storage or the method of transmission. There is no legal difference between the level of protection afforded to physical files over those that are store or transmitted electronically or in any other form.