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FERPA

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
(To view the forms in Spanish, please contact Solomon School.)

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

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 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are "eligible students."


Parents or eligible students have the right to inspect and review the student's education records maintained by the school. Schools are not required to provide copies of records unless, for reasons such as great distance, it is impossible for parents or eligible students to review the records. Schools may charge a fee for copies.

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;

*Accrediting organizations;

*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.

For additional information, you may call 1-800-USA-LEARN (1-800-872-5327) (voice). Individuals who use TDD may call 1-800-437-0833.

Or you may contact us at the following address:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-8520



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NOTIFICATION OF CONFIDENTIALITY RIGHTS REGARDING EDUCATION RECORDS OF STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES AND THEIR PARENTS

Confidentiality of education records is a right of public school students and their parents. Two federal laws, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) provide this right. Under these laws, "education records" means those records that are: (1) directly related to a student; and (2) maintained by an educational agency or institution or by a party acting for the agency or institution. Of course, education records are maintained on every child enrolled in a public school. The types of information gathered and maintained includes, but is not limited to: the student's and parents' names, address and telephone number; the student's date of birth, date of enrollment in the school, records from previous schools attended, attendance records, subjects taken, grades, school activities, assessment results, number of credits earned, immunization records, disciplinary records, if any, correspondence from parents, and child find and other screening results, including hearing and vision screening results.

In addition, for children with disabilities, education records could include, among other things, evaluations and testing materials, medical and health information, each annual Individualized Education Program (IEP), notices to parents, notes regarding IEP meetings, parental consent documents, information provided by parents, progress reports, assessment results, material related to disciplinary actions, and mediation agreements.

The information is gathered from a number of sources including the student's parents and staff of the school of attendance. Also, with parental permission, information may be gathered from additional sources including doctors and other health care providers.

This information is gathered to assure proper identification of a student and student's parents and the maintenance of accurate records of the student's progress and activities in school. For children with disabilities, additional information is collected in order to assure the child is identified, evaluated, and provided Free Appropriate Public Education in accordance with the state and federal special education laws.

Each agency participating under Part B of IDEA must assure that all stages of gathering, storing, retaining and disclosing education records to third parties that it complies with the federal confidentiality laws. In addition, the destruction of any education records of a child with a disability must be in accordance with IDEA regulatory requirements.

The federal Family Policy Compliance Office of the U.S. Department of Education has provided the following notice of parent's rights under FERPA.

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords parents and students over 18 years of age ("eligible students") certain rights with request to the student's education records. They are:

(1) The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the school receives a request for access.
Parents or eligible students should submit to the school principal (or appropriate school official) a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The principal will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.

(2) The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate or misleading.
Parents or eligible student may ask a school district to amend the records that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the school principal, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.
If the school decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the school will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise then of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.

(3) The right to consent to disclosure of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the school as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a person serving on the school board; a person or company with whom the school has contracted to perform a special task (such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant, or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her task. A school official has legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
Upon request, a school may disclose education records, without consent, to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
An agency reporting a crime committed by a student with a disability shall ensure that copies of special education and disciplinary records of the student are transmitted for consideration by the appropriate authorities to whom it reports the crime. An agency reporting a crime may transmit copies of the student's special education and disciplinary records only to the extent permitted by FERPA.

(4) The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by a school to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:
Family Policy Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Ave. SW
Washington D.C. 20202-5910

A school may designate information in education records as "directory information" and may disclose it without parent consent, unless notified that the school is not to disclose the information without consent. The law defines "directory information" as follows:

The student's name, address, telephone listing, date and place of birth, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by student.

Notice of these rights are available, upon request, on audio tape, in Braille, and in languages other than English. You may contact the Arizona Department of Education at 602-542-3111.


Early Intervention Child Find

If you have concerns about your child's development or progress in school, contact the Arizona Early Intervention Program or your local school district.

WHAT IS CHILD FIND?

It is a process to "find" children who may have a delay in development of a disability. The Arizona Early Intervention Program and local schools can help children with disabilities from birth through 21 years old. They provide early intervention and special education services for eligible children. Ther are no costs for Child Find services.

WHAT IF I HAVE CONCERNS?

If you have concerns about your child's development or progress in school, you may receive help through Child Find. COntact the Arizona Early Intervention Program or your local school district.

HOW DOES CHILD FIND WORK?

If your child is under 3 years old, an Arizona Early Intervention specialist will come to your home to talk to you about your concerns and observe your child.
For children ages 3 through 21, local schools use screening tools to check your child's development or performance in the areas that affect development and learning in school:
* vision and hearing
* motor control and coordination
* behavior and social skills
* speech and language skills
* thinking and performing tasks
* adaptive behavior

Childfind helps identify areas and concerns that may need further evaluation. Ask for a copy of "A Checklist of Your Chiild's Growth from Birth to Five". This pamphlet helps you to follow your child's development.

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT

If an evaluation is needed, you will be part of the evaluation team. You give information on your child's development, medical history, and concerns you have about your child's development.
The team will explain the results to you after the evaluation is copmpleted. If the evaluation shows your child is eligible to receive early intervention, preschool or school-ages specail education services, you can decide to accept or decline.

WHAT IS EARLY INTERVENTION?

Early intervention provides supports and services to help families strengthen their child's development. Early intervention is planned around each child and family's unique daily routines and family life.
For more information about the Arizona Early Intervention Program, visit this website www.ade.state.as.us/azeip/ or call 1-888-439-5690.

WHAT IS PRESCHOOL SPECIAL EDUCATION?

Preschool education services include special strategies to help the chiuld reach developmental milestones. These may include realsted services such as speech therapy, occupational therapy, physwical therapy, or assistive technology.
Preschool services are provided in a preschool group or classroom setting at no cost to the parent

WHO DO I CONTACT FOR CHILD FIND?

* for children ages birth to 3, phone numbers for the local Arizona Early Intervention Program offices are listed. Call your local Arizona Early InterventionProgram and ask to speak to an Interim Service Coordinator. For Graham County, Safford (928)428-7231
* For children ages 3 to 5 years, call Solomon School at (928)428-0477
* For children ages 5 to 21 years, call Solomon School at (928)428-0477

For Child Find information, visit this web site:ade.az.gov/ess/childfind or call 1-800-352-4558 and ask for Child Find. Ask for a copy of "Traveling the Special Education Highway".


SPECIAL EDUCATION PROCESS

Child Find and Identification
A. Review records
B. Conduct screening
C. Conduct and document prereferral activities
D. Make referral for evaluation
E. Provide PWN (Prior Written Notice)
F. Provide PSN (Procedural Safeguards Notice)

1. Initial Evaluation and Determination of Eligibility
A. Provide Meeting Notice, if a meeting is held
B. Review existing data by MET/IEP team members
C1: If no additional data needed
* determine eligibility
* develop evaluation report
* provide PWN, review parental rights regarding
initial evaluation
C2: If additional data needed
* provide PWN
* obtain parental consent
* gather additional data
* determine eligibility
* develop evaluation report
* provide PWN
D. Provide parent evaluation report and eligibility determination

2. IEP (Individualized Education Plan) Development
A. Provide Meeting Notice
B. Complete IEP
C. Determine levels of service and LRE (Least Restrictive Environment)

3. Initial Placement
A. Obtain written parental consent
B. Provide PWN

4. IEP Implementation in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)
A. Inform teachers of IEP responsibilities and provide IEP access
B. Provide services
C. Prepare progress reports and submit to parents

5. Review and Revision of IEP
A. Provide Meeting Notice and Annual PSN
B. Review/revise IEP
C. Determine levels of service and LRE
D. Provide parents PWN and copy of IEP

6. Reevaluation and Determination of Eligibility
A. Provide Meeting Notice as appropriate
B. Document the Review of Existing Data by MET/IEP team members
C1: If NO additional data needed
*Nofify parents of right to request additional
data; PWN
*Document parent agreement that no additional evaluation
is needed
*Determine continued eligibility
*Provide PWN
C2: If additional data needed
*Provide PWN
*Obtain parental consent
*Gather additional data
*Determine additioanl data
*Develop reevaluation report
*Provide PWN
7. Review and Revision of IEP (return to step 5)
OR Dismiss from Special Education
A. Provide evaluation report and eligibility determination
B. Provide PWN



Parents of Students with Special Education

There will be information coming home on Monday. We will aslo be calling and creating a plan how we can help your child.

Section 504

Section 504 is a federal statute that prohibits discrimination based upon a disability. Section 504 covers eligible students and other individuals with disabilities for reasonable accommodations that enable them to work or learn. A team knowledgeable of the person determines if the individual meets eligibility criteria. The following is the definition of a disability under Section 504.
A person may be considered under the definition of Section 504 if the individual:
1. has a mental or physical impairment which subsequently limits one or more of such person's major life activities (caring for one’s self, walking, seeing, speaking, learning, performing manual tasks, working, hearing, breathing)
2. has a record of such an impairment; or
3. is regarded as having such an impairment

   
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