Is fastIEP compliant with FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act), also known as Title 34 Subtitle A Part 99 of the Code of Federal Regulations?
The short answer is "yes", fastIEP is fully compliant with FERPA. We collect only the minimum amount of information needed for the program to function, and we never share, sell or otherwise transfer any data to any third parties. Data is encrypted end-to-end and accessible only to a minimum number of employees who have an absolute need to access this data. We employ industry best-practices for data breach prevention and intrusion prevention. Our data is hosted on Amazon AWS cloud infrastructure entirely within the United States.
FERPA contains many provisions, most of which do not apply to fastIEP.
fastIEP only collects a minimal amount of data regarding students, almost all of which is optional or can be de-identified. The data falls into the following categories:
1. "Directory Information" (34 CFR 99.3)
Directory information is defined by FERPA as information contained in an education record of a student that would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. fastIEP collects the following directory information:
Note that you are not required to enter the student's full name, or their real name. If you prefer, you can enter a nickname or other identifier.
2. “Parent” (34 CFR 99.3)
FERPA defines this as a parent of a student and includes a natural parent, a guardian, or an individual acting as a parent in the absence of a parent or a guardian. fastIEP collects the following information on parents:
All of the above information is optional and is not required to use fastIEP. It is intended as a convenience to teachers in case they need to contact parents about IEP progress.
3.Personally Identifiable Information
As stated above, fastIEP collects optional information that falls under the FERPA definition of "Personally Identifiable Information". You can choose not to record this information, or to de-identify it. The FERPA definition is quoted below:
(a) The student's name;
We do require this, but you can de-identify it, use a nickname, use first name only or use initials only.
(b) The name of the student's parent or other family members;
This information is optional. fastIEP has a space to enter it but it is not required.
(c) The address of the student or student's family;
fastIEP does not collect this information.
(d) A personal identifier, such as the student's social security number, student number, or biometric record;
Student number is optional. fastIEP has a place to enter this, but you do not need to enter student ID number to use fastIEP.
(e) Other indirect identifiers, such as the student's date of birth, place of birth, and mother's maiden name;
(f) Other information that, alone or in combination, is linked or linkable to a specific student that would allow a reasonable person in the school community, who does not have personal knowledge of the relevant circumstances, to identify the student with reasonable certainty; or
(g) Information requested by a person who the educational agency or institution reasonably believes knows the identity of the student to whom the education record relates.
4. Participation in Special Education Program
FERPA's definition includes any student who participates in a program authorized under section 619 or part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Since fastIEP is designed to track IEP progress, the fact that a student has a record in fastIEP would make it obvious that the student was participating in such a program.
fastIEP collects only a minimum amount of personally identifiable information, all of which is either optional or can be de-identified. We never allow third parties to access this data, and we protect it with industry best-practice security, including end-to-end encryption, firewalls, tiered access controls and intrusion prevention.
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