Family Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), also known as the Buckley Amendment of 1974, is a federal law that describes how schools and colleges keep and/or distribute student information and records. Part of the law covers students who are under the age of 18 and are enrolled in public schools; the other part covers students enrolled in postsecondary institutions. The act was created to safeguard student privacy.


What rights does FERPA provide?

FERPA provides four basic rights to students:

  • The right to inspect and review their educational records.
  • The right to request an amendment to their educational records if the student believes the records are inaccurate or misleading.
  • The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s educational records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
  • The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Hinds Community College to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
What is an Educational Record?

Education records include those records which contain information directly related to a student and which are maintained by the college or by a person acting for the college. In accordance with FERPA guidelines, educational records are those records directly related to a student’s scholastic performance and maintained by the institution.

How does Hinds Community College define Directory Information?

Directory Information is information contained in a student’s educational record that generally would not be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Under the terms of FERPA, Hinds Community College has established the following as Directory Information:

  1. Name, address, and telephone number
  2. Classification (Freshman, Sophomore, etc.)
  3. Major (Program of Study)
  4. Dates of attendance
  5. Enrollment status (full or part-time)
  6. Degrees earned
  7. Honors received
  8. Photographic images
  9. Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  10. Weight and height of members of athletic teams
Can a student prevent disclosure of Directory Information?

A student can manage their privacy settings in Navigator. Here, the student will be given two options:

  1. I consent to share my information outside of this institution.
  2. I don’t consent to share my information outside of this institution.

If a student chooses option 1 above, their directory information will NOT be made public.
If a student chooses option 2 above, there will be two additional options to choose from:

  1. I want my directory information to be public.
  2. I don’t want my directory information to be public.

*To view a tutorial on how to complete this task, please visit the Navigator for Students Canvas course.

What does FERPA mean to parents?

FERPA rights belong to the students when they enroll in a postsecondary institution. To protect these rights, Hinds Community College will only release a student’s educational record with consent by the student. The student will need to designate these permissions in Navigator by designating a third-party user and granting permission to an individual for specific access to information.

May parents take action for the students, like paying bills and viewing grades, etc.?

Not without consent. The student will need to designate permission in Navigator to a third-party user and grant permissions to an individual for specific access to information.

How do I share my information with a parent or guardian?

To share your information with anyone you must designate a third party-user and grant permissions to that user specific to the tasks and information you want them to have access to. You will also sign a FERPA Release form as a part of this process to allow Hinds to share that information on your behalf.

How do I designate a third-party user and set-up permissions?

Please watch videos here to see how to set up your third-party user, grant permissions to your third-party user, and sign the FERPA Release form.
*To view a tutorial on how to complete this task, please visit the Navigator for Students Canvas course.

Who do I contact if I have questions about FERPA?

All questions regarding FERPA should be directed to the Registrar by email at or by phone at 601-857-3280.