For parents, the greatest differences between high school and college are parents' ability to access information about their children's academic progress and the parents' ability to participate. Once a child enters college, regardless of age, they are allowed certain rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Except for providing the following information, the college must have a release of information form signed by the student and on file with the admissions and registration office before staff can talk to parents about their child.
Without a signed release of information form, the college will only release, upon request,
- student name
- major field of study
- quarters of attendance (including current enrollment)
- degrees and awards received
- extracurricular activities, height/weight of athletic team members, awards received, most recent previous educational agency or institution attended.
For any other information, or to participate in an advising session, FERPA requires the college to have a release of information form signed by the student.