Families

Families and the support they provide are important for student success. The following information constitutes official public notice of the University’s compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Students should visit our FERPA Information for Students page for more information.

What is FERPA? 

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law passed in 1974. As amended, the law protects the privacy of student records and sets requirements for the release of student information. It applies to K-12 schools and post-secondary institutions (colleges/universities). 

FERPA governs the disclosure of education records maintained by an education institution, as well as access to these records. FERPA rights belong to the student at a postsecondary institution regardless of the student’s age. FERPA applies to all students, including continuing education students, students auditing a class, distance education students, former students and alumni. 

Education records under FERPA are defined as records directly related to a student, which are maintained by an educational agency or institution, or by a party acting for the agency or institution, if certain conditions are met. 

 

Families’ Rights under FERPA 

One of the most significant changes that families experience when a student enrolls in college is who has the right to access the student’s educational records. 

Under FERPA, parents, guardians and other family members do not have access to their students’ postsecondary (college/university) education records. All rights belong to the student, regardless of their age. 

UAlbany employees are required to be vigilant in protecting students’ academic records. The University provides students with secure, 24/7 access to MyUAlbany. Students can use this portal to view and manage their registration, class schedule, grades, degree audit, bills, financial aid, refunds, etc. 

If a parent, guardian or family member contacts the University and requests access to their students’ academic record, we refer them back to the student and encourage an open dialogue. 

Students can choose to share an unofficial transcript, degree audit and/or enrollment verification with their family members to demonstrate their academic performance and progress. 

The University can only give family members access to their student’s records if we have the student’s written and notarized consent, via the Student Consent to Release Information form. The Registrar’s Office then must authenticate a family member’s identity by reviewing a valid photo ID, either in person or via video call. 

Family members who need access to student billing information must ask their student to set up an authorized user in E-Pay. Authorized users can make payments on behalf of their student and access the student’s billing statements, payment history, account activity and tax statements. 

For more information, watch the Registrar’s FERPA for Families video presentation. You can also access the slides from the presentation

 

families