Special Education Records
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law that affords parents the right to have access to their children’s education records, the right to seek to have the records amended, and the right to have some control over the disclosure of personally identifiable information from the education records. When a student turns 18 years old, or enters a postsecondary institution at any age, the rights under FERPA transfer from the parents to the student (“eligible student”). The FERPA statute is found at 20 U.S.C. § 1232g and the FERPA regulations are found at 34 CFR Part 99.
It is the policy of the St. Louis Board of Education to preserve the confidentiality of educational records and other personally identifiable information pertaining to students with disabilities. This policy applies to the collection, maintenance, access, disclosure, and destruction of such student records and shall be in conformity with applicable state and federal laws, regulations and policies.
The maintenance of student records in the St. Louis Public Schools shall be consistent with the "Policy on Privacy of Student Records" of the St. Louis Board of Education.
It shall be the responsibility of the school to ensure that all student records are maintained in a secured, confidential area of the building and that procedures are established within the school to protect the privacy and security of such records.
The Office of Special Education maintains some records for former students. We are not required by law to have records on file for students who have not received special education services with Saint Louis Public Schools for more than 3 years. However, we make an effort to have some files available in some cases. To obtain a copy of an available record, please mail correspondence with signed consent from the parent or eligible student to the following address or fax number:
St. Louis Public Schools
Office of Special Education, 1st Fl
Attn: SPED Records
801 N. 11th Street
St. Louis MO 63101
Fax correspondence: 314.244.1899
For customer service, please call: 314.633.5300, 314.345.4454 or 314.345.5711.
*** For current students and students who attended a St. Louis Public School in the last 5 years, please contact the last school of attendance for special education records.
FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children's education records. Parents or eligible students have the right to inspect and review the student's education records maintained by the school within 45 days.
Parents or eligible students have the right to request that a school correct records which they believe to be inaccurate or misleading. If the school decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student then has the right to a formal hearing. After the hearing, if the school still decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student has the right to place a statement with the record setting forth his or her view about the contested information.
Generally, schools must have written permission from the parent or eligible student in order to release any information from a student's education record. However, FERPA allows schools to disclose those records, without consent, to the following parties or under the following conditions (34 CFR § 99.31):
School officials with legitimate educational interest;
Other schools to which a student is transferring;
Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes;
Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student;
Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the school;
To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena;
Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and
State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State law.
Schools may disclose, without consent, "directory" information such as a student's name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, honors and awards, and dates of attendance. However, schools must tell parents and eligible students about directory information and allow parents and eligible students a reasonable amount of time to request that the school not disclose directory information about them. Schools must notify parents and eligible students annually of their rights under FERPA. The actual means of notification (special letter, inclusion in a PTA bulletin, student handbook, or newspaper article) is left to the discretion of each school.
It has been a policy for St. Louis Public Schools not to release directory information pertaining to any student in the St. Louis Public Schools. The policies provide that directory information may be disclosed without prior consent only when the superintendent determines the release of the information is for the purpose of benefitting the health, safety or welfare of the child or, for inclusion in a school directory. See St. Louis Board of Education Policies and Regulations R5125.2(B)(1).
St. Louis Public Schools families are not charged for copies of records.