Information for Parents
A Special Note to Parents Concerning Students' Educational Rights and Privacy
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (commonly referred to as the "Buckley Amendment" or "FERPA") is designed to protect the confidentiality of the records that educational institutions maintain on their students and to give students access to their records to ensure the accuracy of their contents. The Act affords students certain rights with respect to their education records.
Generally speaking, these rights include the right to inspect and review their education records, the right to request amendment of their education records if the student believes they are inaccurate or misleading, the right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information in their education records, and the right to contact the Family Policy Compliance Office with a complaint concerning the College’s compliance.
Information that Emerson College may disclose at its discretion is called "Directory Information" and includes the following: name, name of parent(s)/guardian(s), telephone number, dates of attendance, degrees earned, dates of degrees, awards/honors/scholarships, major, sports and activities, height and weight of members of athletic team members, advisor, concentrations, and computer user name.
A few examples of information that are NOT directory information and thus are not releasable without advanced student permission include the student’s schedule, grades, grade-point averages, race or ethnic group, and religion.
Currently enrolled students may withhold disclosure of directory information. To withhold disclosure, written notification must be received on an annual basis (usually at matriculation with a written request). Directory information will then be withheld until the student releases the hold on disclosure or until the end of the current academic year, whichever comes first.
A Special Word to Parents Concerning Students' Grades
Grades and all other student education records are protected by FERPA. In compliance with the law, this "non-directory" information (including grades and academic progress) requires the student's written consent prior to its release by a school official to any source outside the College (including parents). At the conclusion of each semester, students are able to access their final grades electronically through eCommon (ecommon.emerson.edu). Parents interested in seeing their student’s grades should request that their student either log them on to their electronic grade report or provide them with a printed copy of their grade report. Grades are not sent to the student by mail.
Specific, detailed information and a FERPA Tutorial concerning student rights can be found in the FERPA section.