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What rights do the parents of a 18 year old student have as far as student records, report cards, etc...

Torrington, CT |

My son will turn 18 half way through his Senior Year - what are my rights as far as a parent about getting access to grades, progress reports, etc... between his 18th birthday and graduation?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. A federal law, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) controls.

    FERPA says that at 18 the rights accorded to and consent previously required of the student's parents transfer to the student. Written consent by the student can permit the parents to obtain records.

    There is an exception in FERPA that provides that schools may disclose information from the education record to the student's parents if the eligible student is a dependent as defined in section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.

    I wrote this to help you and others who may face issues like yours in the future. I hope you find my response to be helpful and informative. If you do, please click the thumbs up icon. If this is your question and you find my answer to be the most helpful, please click best answer. I appreciate feedback. My answer is not legal advice and does not establish a client/attorney relationship. The question may not be a complete or accurate description of the problem and there is no chance to ask a follow up question. It is impossible to give complete advice without a thorough discussion of the facts, such as we would have during an initial consultation. Further, laws are different from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and are subject to change. So, please, do not act on any information provided without consulting with a lawyer licensed to practice in your jurisdiction who has experience with the kind of issues that concern you.


  2. You can ask your son, once he turns 18, to agree in writing that you can have have full access to all of the education records maintained by the school. He can change his mind, but you will have a start.

    DISCLAIMER: I have not agreed to be your lawyer or to give you any legal advice. This response is for information purposes only and is not legal advice. For legal advice you need to find a lawyer who will agree to represent you in this matter.

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