Frequently Asked Questions for Parents of Children With Disabilities
Your child's school record is an important source of information. Under state and federal confidentiality requirements, you have rights concerning this record. These rights have to do with inspection and release of your child's record. The questions and answers that follow do not cover all requirements but may help you become more familiar with some of them.
What is confidentiality? Confidentiality is protecting all personally identifiable data, information and records collected, used, or kept by the school district about a student. Confidentiality also applies to discussions about your child or your child's records.
What is personally identifiable data or information?Personally identifiable information includes: child or family names and address, child's social security or student number, descriptions that would make it easy to identify your child, and anything else that would make it easy to identify your child.
What is a school record? A school record, which is sometimes called an "educational record'' or a "permanent record,'' is anything that the district collects, uses, or keeps about a child. This includes grades, health information, attendance reports, work papers, school photos, test results, etc. Data or information may be handwritten, drawn, or typed. It may also be a photograph, on audio or video tape, or on computer disk.
Does all the information in my child's school record have to kept in one place? No. Many school districts have information in several places, including on computer. School staff must tell you the types and locations of all information about your child.
How do I find about my rights? At least once a year, the school district will tell all parents about their rights related to confidentiality of student records. Some districts put this notice in the local newspaper. Others send the notice to your home. These rights are also described in information the school gives you to explain your rights as the parent of a child who has a disability. You may call your child's school and ask for an explanation of these rights. You may ask for an explanation at any Admissions and Release Committee (ARC) meeting.
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