Right to Inspect and Amend Education Records

Students have the right to inspect and review their education records. Students should submit to the appropriate record custodian a written request which identifies as precisely as possible the record or records to be inspected. The record custodian, or an appropriate college staff person, will make the needed arrangements for access as promptly as possible and will notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. Access must be given within 45 calendar days or less from the receipt of the written request. When record information contains information about more than one student, the student may inspect and review only the specific information about the requesting student. A student may not inspect and review confidential letters and statements of recommendation placed in the student's records before January 1, 1975. Appendix A lists Education Record Custodians at SUNY Cortland (records and list are not exhaustive).

Amendment of Education Records

Students may ask the College to amend a record they believe is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of their right of privacy. Following are the procedures for amendment of records:

  1. The student must make a written request to the custodial office responsible for the record, precisely identify the part of the record they want changed and specify what is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the student's right of privacy.
  2. SUNY Cortland may comply with the request or may decide not to comply. If it decides not to comply, the College will notify the student of the decision within 45 calendar days and advise the student of the right to a hearing to challenge the information believed to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the student's rights.
  3. Upon request, SUNY Cortland will arrange for a hearing and notify the student, reasonably in advance, of the date, place and time of the hearing.
  4. The student shall be afforded a full and fair opportunity to present evidence relevant to the issues raised in the original request to amend the student's education record. The student may be assisted by one or more individuals, including an attorney.
  5. If the custodial office maintaining the record reports to a Vice President, the hearing will be conducted by the Vice President (or designee) responsible for the supervision of this office.
  6. If the custodial office maintaining the record is a Vice President, the hearing will be conducted by the President (or designee).
  7. SUNY Cortland will prepare a written decision, within 10 business days of completion of the hearing, based solely on the evidence presented at the hearing. The decision will include a summary of the evidence presented and the reasons for the decision.
  8. If SUNY Cortland determines that the challenged information is not inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the student's rights of privacy, it will notify the student that a statement commenting on the challenged information and/or statement setting forth reasons for disagreeing with the decision may be appended to the record.

Right of College to Refuse Access

SUNY Cortland reserves the right to refuse a student or applicant request to access to the following records:

  1. The financial statement of the student's parents.
  2. Letters and statements of recommendation for which the student has waived the right of access.
  3. Records connected with an application for admission to attend SUNY Cortland or another unit of the State University of New York if that application was denied.
  4. Those records which are excluded from the FERPA definition of education records (20 USC §1232g (a) (4); 34 CFR §99.3).

For those records that contain information on more than one student, the requesting student has the right to view only those portions of the record that pertain to his or her own education record.

Refusal to Provide Copies of Records

SUNY Cortland reserves the right to deny to the student transcripts or copies of records not required to be made available under FERPA if the student has any accrued debts or outstanding obligations, owed to the College or to any agency thereof.

Fees for Copies of Records

The fee for copies of education records is included in the current Tuition and Fee Schedule (identical to current processing cost of student transcript).