3.4.1 Access to Student Records

Access to Student Records

Full access to student records is granted to: 

  • a) Parents/guardians/caregivers of students age 17 and younger.  
  • b) Parents/guardians/caregivers of students age 18 and older if the student is dependent. 
  • c) Students age 16 or older or eligible students enrolled in post-secondary institutions

Maintenance of Records

A log shall be maintained for each student’s record which lists all persons or organizations requesting or receiving information from that record. Requests for access to the log should be directed to the school principal.  (CA Education Code 49064)

Grades

The grade given to each student shall be determined by the teacher, and in the absence of mistake, fraud, bad faith, or incompetency, shall be final. Failure to wear standardized physical education apparel shall not adversely affect the student’s grade, if the failure to wear such apparel is beyond the student’s control.  (CA Education Code 49066) 

Student Progress

Each school district shall prescribe regulations requiring the evaluation of each student’s achievement for each grading period requiring a conference with or a written report to the parent of each student when it becomes evident to the teacher that the student is in danger of failing a course.  The refusal of the parent to attend the conference or to respond to the written report shall not preclude failing the student at the end of the grading period.  (CA Education Code 49067)

Transfer of Records

Any school district requesting transfer of a student’s record for the purpose of enrollment shall notify the parent/guardian/caregiver of their right to receive a copy of the record or to challenge the content of the request. (CA Education Code 49068)

Inspection of Records

Student records are available for review during regular school hours.  Requests for access should be directed to the school principal and must be granted within five (5) days from the date of the request. (CA Education Code 49069)

  • Directory Information includes student’s name, address, telephone number, date of birth, email address, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and public and private school most recently attended. (CA Education Code 49061(c)).  
  • Directory information does NOT include citizenship status, immigration status, place of birth, or any other information indicating national origin, and  the district will not release such information without parental consent or a court order.

Recipients of Directory Information

Directory Information may be released to the school-sponsored parent organization; prospective employers; military recruiters; law enforcement agencies; volunteers assisting staff with school related duties; private schools or colleges/universities.  Directory Information may also be released to community based organizations with District MOUs that are providing support services to students,  or local, state or federal government agencies that are providing or offering support services to students and families, including agencies that can use such information to directly certify families for participation in the National Free and Reduced Price Lunch program such as the San Francisco Human Services Agency and the California Department of Education.  Access to Directory Information may be further limited by Administrative Regulation.

A separate subset of directory information includes the following school publications that will be accessible to the recipients listed above or any members of the public who are present at school activities/events and thereby obtain copies of the listed documents:

  • A playbill, showing the student’s role in a drama production;
  • Annual school yearbook, which may include the student’s photograph, activities or field of study;
  • Honor roll or other publicly posted recognition lists;
  • Graduation programs, which may include student names, degrees awarded and honors;
  • Sports activity sheets, which may include student names, height, and/or weight.

Finally, the District may provide members of the media with information about awards and honors received by students, including the name of the award/honor, the student’s name, and the school location.

Non-Release of Information to Armed Forces Recruiters:

Upon written request, parents may direct that their student’s name, address and telephone listing not be released without prior written parental consent.

Opting Out of Sharing Directory Information:

A parent/guardian/caregiver who does not want Directory Information released regarding their child must submit their request in writing to their student’s school principal.  The written request should be submitted within the first 2 weeks of school.  Directory information will not be released concerning a student once the parent/guardian/caregiver notifies the principal in writing that such information shall not be released to any or all of the recipients listed above.  However, failure to submit such notice in a timely manner may prevent enforcement regarding school publications if the student’s information has already been included in printed school publications.

California School Information Services

San Francisco Unified School District is participating with the California School Information Services (CSIS) Program in the electronic transfer of student data for state reporting to the California Department of Education and to districts and/or public postsecondary institutions to which the student is transferring or applying for admission. All data maintained by the CSIS Program is in compliance with federal and state privacy and confidentiality requirements. The benefits of participation to the student and parent are that student records can be transferred much more promptly, and that information about student assessment and academic placement will be available at the time of transfer. Schools and districts will benefit from the streamlining and reduction of required state reporting. Parents have the right to inspect student information maintained by the CSIS program. Contact your school site principal to initiate this procedure.

Statistical Data

The district may, in its discretion, provide statistical data from which no student can be identified, to a public agency or entity, or a private nonprofit college, university or educational research and development organization when such action would be in the best educational interest of students and that no student may be identified.  (CA Education Code 49074)  If you believe the district is not in compliance with federal regulations on privacy of records, you may file a complaint with:

U.S. Secretary of Education
50 United Nations Plaza
San Francisco, CA 94120
Phone: (415) 556-4120

Parents/guardians/caregivers and eligible students will be notified prior to the destruction of special education records.

Parents/guardians/caregivers must be informed upon enrollment that the district fingerprinting program is available to parents/guardians/caregivers if they so request. Information is available from school site principals.

Student records shall not be withheld from the requesting district/school because of any charges or fees owed by the student or their parent/guardian/caregiver. (CA Code of Regulations Title 5, Section 438c)

More about internet use and privacy in chapter 5.5.7. More information about student records and privacy rights available in chapter 3.3.3.