Can the School Withhold My Child's Records?

My son's high school teachers don't always follow his IEP. I am working with an attorney to make sure that they do. When I asked the school to send my son’s records to me, they said no. Can they do that?
The Experts | posted by Robert Tudisco
ADDitude contributor Robert Tudisco is a practicing attorney with ADHD and an expert on special education law and disability advocacy.

No, they can't. Under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), you are entitled to full and confidential access to your child's education file. Information about your child must be kept confidential, but cannot be withheld from you.

The only exception to this is when your son or daughter attends college. Then, the rights you previously had under FERPA belong to your child, because he is considered an adult. A good practice is to discuss your having access to his records before he heads off to campus. If your teen agrees, speak to the college about his signing a waiver to keep you in the loop.

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