Wesleyan University maintains strict confidentiality of student records, sharing information internally for legitimate educational purposes only. Legitimate purposes include matters related to the institution's operations, individual student welfare, or the welfare of other students.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their educational records. These rights include:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s educational records within 45 days of the day Wesleyan University receives a request for access. Students should submit to the registrar written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. A registrar’s office official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
- The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA. A student who wishes to ask the university to amend a record should write to the Wesleyan official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed and specify why it should be changed. If Wesleyan decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the university will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when they are notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to provide or not provide written consent before Wesleyan discloses 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 Wesleyan University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA are:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5920
Public Notice Designating Directory Information:
Wesleyan University designates the following information as public or “Directory Information” under FERPA, that is, information that can be made available to the general public by Wesleyan without the student’s prior consent:
- Local and home addresses
- Local and home telephone number
- Email address
- Major field of study
- Degree sought
- Weight and height of athletic team members
- Expected date of completion of degree requirements and graduation
- Degrees and awards received
- Honor societies
- Dates of attendance
- Full- or part-time enrollment status
- Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
Parent/Family Notification Practices
FERPA regulations assign students the right to release information contained in their education records even when they are under the age of 18. Consistent with Wesleyan’s efforts to promote each student’s personal growth and autonomy, the University will not release information about a student’s education record to parents/guardians without the student’s consent, except as described in this policy.
Students wishing to grant access to certain individuals in accordance with FERPA and University Policy may complete and sign the Consent to Release Student Information form:
In all cases, any release of student information remains at the discretion of the University.
Wesleyan may notify parents/guardians of their student’s status in situations not specifically listed below if the circumstances warrant and with the approval of the vice president for student affairs.
Common examples of when Wesleyan will notify parents/guardians include:
Notice of a Student's Enrollment and Academic Standing
Wesleyan communicates only with students regarding their academic progress and performance unless a student specifically requests in writing to their class dean that such information be released to their parents/guardians. Students are encouraged to share information regarding their academic progress with their parents/guardians but are not mandated to do so.
However, a change of student status (e.g., when a student withdraws or is placed on academic probation, required resignation, academic separation, or a leave) constitutes a change in enrollment status and the class dean will typically notify parents/guardians with or without the student’s consent.
Notice of a Student's Disciplinary/Conduct Standing
Wesleyan expects each student to take responsibility for their actions. Each student must agree to abide by the Honor Code and Code of Non-Academic Conduct when they enroll in the University.
Wesleyan will communicate about disciplinary matters directly with the student, and parents/guardians will not be notified unless the student chooses to inform them. However, if a serious disciplinary case results in a change in the student’s enrollment status (e.g., probation, suspension, or dismissal), the dean of students office will typically ensure that communication has been made with the student’s parents or guardians. Consistent with Federal law, Wesleyan reserves the right to inform parents/guardians of all violations of campus regulations regarding the use or possession of alcohol or illegal drugs.
Notice of a Student's Health/Welfare Standing
Information regarding a student’s health and/or psychological welfare is protected by strict policies that protect the student’s confidentiality. Students are encouraged to share information regarding their health and/or psychological welfare with their parents/ guardians but the University cannot share this type of information without the student’s informed consent (typically in writing).
Situations may arise in which a student is unable to give informed consent. If a student is transported to the hospital for a life or health emergency, the parents/guardians of the student may be notified by the class dean (or on-call dean if after hours).
If a student is deemed to present a direct threat of harm, Wesleyan may notify parents/guardians without the consent of the student. Wesleyan may also share information with parents/guardians where there is a pressing personal health or public health emergency