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Granting consent for release of special education records under federal law IDEA

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The federal regulations for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) includes many provisions to protect the rights of parents and their child with a disability while also giving families and school systems means by which to resolve disputes. These rights are known as procedural safeguards. Parents have specific rights under this law to grant consent for release of special education records under 34 CFR &300.622.

Unless the information contained in education records and disclosure is authorized without parental consent under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), parents must grant consent before personally identifiable information is disclosed to parties other than officials from the participating agency. Parental consent is not required for purposes of meeting the various requirements of Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) except under the following conditions:

  • Parental consent or the consent of an eligible student (one who has reached the age of majority under State law) must be obtained before personally identifiable information is released to officials of participating agencies providing or paying for transition services.
  • If your child is in, or is going to attend, a private school that is not in the same school district where you reside, your consent must be obtained before any personally identifiable information about your child is released between officials in the school district where the private school is located and the officials in the school district where you reside.

Student's rights under the regulations for FERPA in 34 CFR 99.5 (a) are transferred to your child upon the student reaching the age of majority at eighteen (18). The rights under IDEA are also transferred to your child upon reaching the age of majority. Under IDEA at least one year before the student reaches the age of majority, the student must be given the procedural safeguards notice as well as be informed of their rights under the statute.

Safeguards must also be in place with each participating agency in order to protect the confidentiality of all personally identifiable information at collection, storage, disclosure and destruction stages. One official at each agency must assume responsibility for ensuring confidentiality of this information. Training for all personnel collecting or using this information must be conducted under State policies and procedures as well as Part B of IDEA and FERPA. Each participating agency must maintain, for public inspection, a current list of names and positions of those employees within the agency who may have access to this information.

The school district must inform the parent when personally identifiable information which has been collected, maintained or used is no longer needed to provide educational services to your child. This information must be destroyed at your written request. However, a permanent record of your child's name, address, phone number, grades, attendance record, classes attended, grade level completed and year completed may be maintained without time limitation.

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