Records pertaining to an individual student are called “education records.”  These records are generated at the school or acquired by the school that personally identify the particular student.   Educators need to know what is an education record, and thus what parents are entitled to see.  This topic is generally governed by the federal law FERPA.  Most schools also have policies on the topic, and often require a parent to fill out a form to request a copy of education records.

Information in Education Records Includes

  • Academic Records (Classes Taken, Grades, Class Rank)
  • Record of Attendance
  • Results on Aptitude, Psychological, and Intelligence Tests
  • Disciplinary Actions
  • Special Awards
  • School Activity Participation
  • Accident and Health Reports

This information is private, and is only available to those who are legally entitled to view it. Schools must take steps to ensure that records are stored safely.

Who Is Allowed to View Student Records

There are only small, select lists of people who are allowed to access a student’s education records.

  • The Student
  • Student’s Parents (If Child is Under 18 Years Old)
  • School personnel
  • Authorized Law Enforcement Agency

The student or his or her parents may give permission for the records to be provided to others. This must be done in writing. It is advisable for schools to keep a record of all access to student education records.  Do not provide records outside of the guidelines.

Legal Considerations

It is important that schools have policies in place to properly handle education records. This will help minimize problems from arising in the future. Education records must be properly stored and purged according to a variety of rules and laws.  Extreme care must be taken with electronic records, to ensure that they are secure, and properly designated as education records, if true.  Any questions regarding legal access to student records should be discussed with a qualified education law attorney.


This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding Education Records, or other Education Law matters, please feel free to contact Erin H. Walz at 480.461.5379, log on to or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.