The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. FERPA provides parents certain rights with respect to their children’s education records. Parents may inspect and review their student’s records. If they believe the records are inaccurate, they may ask in writing to amend them. Parents also have the right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information in the record, except under those authorized circumstances listed below.

The North Dakota Center for Distance Education does collect demographic and academic information on its students for state/federal reporting purposes. In accordance with FERPA, it is understood that NDCDE may release grade information and course progress to the student’s supervisor, school administrator, counselor, or other authorized individuals and entities. In accordance with FERPA, this information may be provided to the following parties or under the following conditions:

  • school officials with legitimate educational interests;
  • other schools to which a student is transferring;
  • specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes;
  • appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student;
  • accrediting organizations;
  • in compliance with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena; or
  • appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State law.

In addition, directory information may be made public. NDCDE has identified the student’s name, address, dates of attendance, grade level, honor roll status, and schools attended as directory information. The North Dakota Center for Distance Education uses directory information in its course catalog, newsletter, and graduation publications. Students and parents may rightfully request, in writing, that directory information not be used in these publications.