Student's Records and Privacy Rights

Student's Records and Privacy Rights

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974

MSTC annually informs students of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 in the Student Handbook. This act protects the privacy of educational records, establishes the rights of students to inspect and review their educational records and provides guidelines for the correction of inaccurate or misleading data through informal and formal hearings.

Education Records

Education Records are defined as “records, files, communications and other materials in any recorded medium that relate directly to a student and are maintained by MSTC.” These records include but are not limited to: academic records, financial records, disabilities information, counseling documentation and instructional progress. Health records that are shared with counselors or staff of MSTC for instructional or counseling purposes are classified as student records by FERPA.

Right to Review and Inspect Education Records

Students have the right to the following:

  1. Inspect and review information contained in educational records. (All requests to review educational records must be made in writing to the Student Records Manager.) Students are provided this opportunity for review within 45 days from the date of receipt of the request. Students may be provided with copies of their education records with appropriate written consent should they be unable to come to the appropriate campus location for review of their records. Official copies of students’ records may not be removed from MSTC.
  2. Challenge the contents of their educational record in writing to the Student Records Manager.
  3. Request a hearing in writing if the outcome of the challenge is unsatisfactory.
  4. Submit an explanatory statement for inclusion in the educational record if the outcome of the hearing is unsatisfactory.
  5. Prevent disclosure with certain exceptions of personally identifiable information.
  6. Secure a copy of the institutional policy, which includes the location of all educational records. (Copies of the policy can be obtained from the Student Records Manager.)
  7. File complaints regarding alleged violations of FERPA with the Family Policy and Compliance Office.

Directory Information

In complying with FERPA guidelines, MSTC will release the following directory information without the consent of the student:

  • Student’s name
  • Student ID number
  • Date of Birth
  • Student Status
  • Address
  • Email address
  • Telephone number
  • Programs of study
  • Dates of enrollment
  • Degrees and awards received (including honors)
  • Past and present sports and student activities
  • Educational institutions attended

Students have the right to inform MSTC that any or all of the above information should not be released without their prior consent. Students who wish to do this must complete the Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information form revoking any or all of the public information listed. Revocation remains in effect until the student notifies MSTC of a change. Forms are also available at any Campus/Student Affairs Office.

Request for Nondisclosure of directory information does not apply to registered sex offenders whose information has been provided to MSTC under the Wetterling Act, including information made available by the Wisconsin sex offender registry and community notification program.

Release of Non-Directory Information
Records are not released to parents without consent of the student. Parents should arrange with their children for sharing of the information. Non-directory information is not released to anyone without written permission from the student, except for the following agencies which can receive this data without the student’s permission as provided by the Privacy Act:

  • Agencies providing financial assistance to the student, such as employers, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and the Veterans Administration;
  • The Wisconsin Technical College Board as part of the process of securing state funds;
  • MSTC designated school officials who have a legitimate educational need for the information. Designated school officials are defined as faculty, employees, auditors and outside service vendors, who require non-directory information to perform a task or assignment;
  • Courts or legal officers on the basis of a subpoena;
  • Properly authorized educational authorities for the purpose of research, provided that the information is not given in personally identifiable format;
  • State and local officials to whom disclosure is required by state statute adopted prior to November 19, 1974.

MSTC may disclose personally identifiable information from an education record to appropriate parties, including parents of an eligible student, in connection with an emergency if knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals.

Release of Personally Identifiable Information to Other Colleges

Release of Personally Identifiable Information to Other Colleges Should an MSTC student seek to enroll in another college or university to complete a course or degree, MSTC may share personally identifiable data with that college or university’s education officials without the student’s prior approval.  MSTC maintains a record of all releases of student records.  A student may request to view a copy of what was shared with the other college by contacting the Student Records Manager at 715.422.5502.

Notice of Financial Privacy Rights

Mid-State Technical College (MSTC) is committed to ensuring the privacy and accuracy of all confidential information. As part of the College’s commitment to maintaining the privacy of students, MSTC has developed this privacy statement. The statement has two purposes:

  1. To educate users about privacy issues;
  2. To inform users about specific privacy policies and guidelines employed at MSTC.

MSTC complies with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which prohibits the release of education records other than public directory information, without student permission. For additional details on FERPA, the document is available for review at www.ed.gov/offices/OII/fpco/ferpa/.

MSTC complies with Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLB) 1999 which requires institutions of higher education that disburse federal aid to maintain student (customer) privacy through FERPA and to maintain safeguards for protecting private financial information of students (customers). http://business.ftc.gov/privacy-and-security/gramm-leach-bliley-act.

Customer Information

For purposes of FERPA and GLB, MSTC considers students, employees, and alumni or any other third party engaged in a financial transaction with MSTC as “customers.” Customer information that must be safeguarded is “any record containing nonpublic personal information about a customer, whether in paper, electronic, or other form.” It includes financial information, academic and employment information and other private paper and electronic records.

Sharing of Customer Information

MSTC will only collect personal information which is knowingly and voluntarily provided by customers, for example, sending emails, completing forms, registering for classes, events, or other programs, responding to surveys or ordering merchandise. If personal information is provided to MSTC, the College will use this information to respond to the customers’ needs. MSTC may also contact customers to provide information about college activities, programs, membership and development opportunities and special events that may be of interest.

MSTC will only share information with other parties when one or more of the following conditions apply:

  • MSTC requested your consent to share the information.
  • MSTC needs to share personal information to provide the service or product requested by the customer.
  • MSTC needs to send information to companies who work on behalf of the College to provide a service or product to customers.
  • MSTC is responding to subpoenas, court orders, or any other legal process.
  • MSTC finds it necessary to protect and defend the legal rights and/or property of MSTC.

MSTC does not actively share personal information about students gathered through web servers or via forms. Because MSTC is a public institution, some information collected from MyMSTC, and student data forms may be subject to the Open Records Law. This means that while information is not actively shared, in some cases the college may be compelled by law to release directory information regarding students. The College collects student social security numbers, to provide student financial aid and to provide data to the State of Wisconsin for state grant and accountability reporting purposes.

MSTC is also required to share student information, including social security numbers, with the State of Wisconsin and the United States Government for purposes of receiving aid for programs and funding for the College or for the purposes of federal student aid. Sharing of this information is permitted under state and federal statute.

MSTC will also share directory information regarding students with educational partners for purposes of promoting educational programs.

Opt Out from Sharing of Information

MSTC does, upon explicit request of users, share directory information with other parties to provide services or information to students. Consistent with FERPA, the college does not release personal student information, other than public directory information, to other parties unless an explicit written authorization is submitted requesting the institution to do so. Students who wish to have their information removed from the campus directory should complete and submit the Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information or visit their local campus office or contact MSTC at 800.575.MSTC, 500 32nd Street, Wisconsin Rapids, WI 54494

Privacy Provisions

MSTC is in compliance with FERPA. Directory information (for example, name, address, enrollment at the college and degree information), the list of which is published yearly in the Student Handbook, is considered public (unless a student has requested otherwise in writing). All non-directory information is restricted or confidential, what GLB calls “non-public.” Under FERPA, restricted information (for example, academic or financial records) is released outside the college only with the student’s written consent. Designated school officials, including faculty, key employees and outside service vendors, have access to restricted, “non-public” information on a need-to-know basis only. In compliance with GLB and long standing good practice, the College extends FERPA privacy protections to all customers of the college.

The Student Records Office will provide guidance in complying with all FERPA privacy regulations. Each department is responsible for securing customer information in accordance with all privacy guidelines.

Security Provisions

With respect to the safeguarding provisions of the GLB Act, Mid-State Technical College GLB Information Security Plan herein is designed to ensure the security, integrity, and confidentiality of non-public customer information, protecting it against anticipated threats, and guarding it against unauthorized access or use. Covered under the Plan are administrative, technical, and physical safeguards used in the collection, distribution, processing, protection, storage, use, transmission, handling or disposal of non-public customer information. The Plan covers actions by both employees of the College and vendors that the College partners with to provide services to students.

MSTC does its best to ensure that the personal information retained about individuals is accurate. Every faculty member, staff member and student has the ability to check personal information such as his or her name, address, phone, etc. through MyMSTC and to update it at any campus office. MSTC has deployed extensive security measures to protect against the loss, misuse or alteration of the information under college control.

Changes to Privacy Information
This document was last updated September 27, 2011. We will occasionally update this privacy information. When we do, we will also revise the “last updated” date.