Rochester, MI asked in Education Law for Michigan

Q: Can the school keep important information about a child away from their parents?

Information as in if the child should be recieving special education benefits like accumulated tests and such without the parent’s knowledge. I’m asking because my daughter was given an accumulated test as her exam. She then decided to email her teacher and the teacher replied in real life saying that there was a meeting about her where they told him to give her accumulated tests. I never knew about this. I wasn’t called for any meetings or recieved any emails. She has only ever been in special education for her speech, NOT for her intelligence.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Lori E. Arons
Lori E. Arons
Answered
  • Education Law Lawyer
  • Hackensack, NJ

A: The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal privacy law that gives parents certain protections with regard to their children's education records, such as report cards, transcripts, disciplinary records, contact and family information, and class schedules. As a parent, you have the right to review your child's education records and to request changes under limited circumstances. To protect your child's privacy, the law generally requires schools to ask for written consent before disclosing your child's personally identifiable information to individuals other than you.

Schools must honor your request to review your child's education records within 45 days of receiving the request. Some states have laws similar to FERPA that require schools to provide access within a shorter period of time. FERPA requires that schools provide parents with an opportunity to inspect and review education records, but not to receive copies, except in limited circumstances.

Parents whose children receive services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) may have additional rights and remedies with regard to their children's education records. Your question does not make clear whether your child is classified as eligible for special education and related services.

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