U.S. Department of Education guidance: Under FERPA, students cannot be required to waive rights as condition of participation

In November 2017, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) issued a letter clarifying student and parental rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) when a school uses online third-party service providers to deliver all or a portion of an educational program. In response to a parent's complaint, ED concluded that a public charter school impermissibly required the parent to waive her rights under FERPA when, as a condition of enrollment, it required the parent to accept the specific terms and conditions set forth in an online service provider's terms of use and privacy policy, which gave the service provider broad rights to use and distribute information about the child.

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