Special Needs Navigation and Parental Rights


 Virginia Consent Provisions and Parental Rights (VDOE and State guidance on Procedural Safeguards and Parental Consent)


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is the federal law that protects the privacy of student education (scholastic) records.  An education record is defined as those records that contain information directly related to a student and which are maintained by an educational agency or institution or by a party acting for the agency or institution.

FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children’s education records.  These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18, “eligible student,” or is enrolled in a postsecondary institution.  

Parents and eligible students are granted the following rights:

  • The right to inspect and review the student’s education records
  • The right to request that a school correct the student’s education record if he or she believes information is inaccurate or misleading
  • The right to a hearing if the school decides not to amend the student’s education record
  • The right to place a statement with the education record on what he or she believes is accurate if the school decides not to amend the student’s education record

Schools, generally, must have written consent from the parent or eligible student to release information from a student’s education record. However, FERPA allows disclosure to certain parties without written consent under certain conditions.

Visit the Virginia Department of Education website for additional information.