Student Records Policy
Disclosure of Information from Education Records
Under the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), as amended, students at Pomona College have the following rights in regard to education records maintained by the College.
- Students have the right to inspect and review their education records, subject to certain limitations. Education records include records, in any medium, which directly relate to a student who is or has been in attendance at the College and maintained by the College. These routine records include, but are not limited to, grades, transcripts, class lists, student course schedules, student financial information, and student discipline files.
- Offices maintaining portions of each student’s education record are the Dean of Students/Office of Student Affairs, Admissions, the Office of Financial Aid, the Registrar, Study Abroad, the offices of each relevant academic department, the Finance Office, the Dean of the College’s office, Human Resources, and (for some records of non-current students) the Office of Advancement. In addition, the following Claremont University Consortium offices [Black Student Affairs, Campus Safety, Chicano/Latino Student Affairs, Health Education Office, Library, Monsour Counseling Center, Student Health Services, and Student Disability Resource Center] may also maintain portions of a student’s education record. Students who have questions about information in any of these files should see the managers/directors of the offices involved. Some records may be administered by additional privacy laws and regulations that supersede FERPA, and, therefore, may not be available under this policy. Requests for the inspection and review of education records must be submitted direct to the custodian of the record, following policy and procedure of the office in whose custody the record is maintained.
- Students have the right to seek to amend their education records to correct inaccurate information. In compliance with College policy, individual offices have established procedures for challenging the content of education records. Students may also submit a written request for correction of a particular education record to the Dean of Students. If a requested amendment or correction to the record is not made, the student may insert into the records a written statement respecting the contested contents. Disputes over the assignment of grades are not covered by these provisions. Students with concerns about the assignment of individual grades are referred to the Policy on Disputed Grades.
- The College will not release personally identifiable information in an education record without the student’s prior written consent. (Some examples of personally identifiable information are grades, exam scores, grade point average, test scores (e.g. SAT, GRE), disciplinary status, birth date, gender, religious affiliation, citizenship, ethnicity, marital status, social security number, and student identification number.) This information may be released to parents only with the student’s written authorization (or if the parent can establish that the student is a dependent for tax purposes). Such authorization remains in effect until cancelled in writing by the student.
- Students have the right to file a complaint with the Federal Policy Compliance Office, a division of the US Department of Education, for any alleged violation of their rights under FERPA. Complaints should be submitted in writing to: Family Policy Compliance Office, US Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Washington DC 20202-5920.
In compliance with FERPA, Pomona College has designated the following items of information as directory information that may be released without the prior consent of the student:
- name and student user name;
- local and permanent address;
- local, cellular, and permanent phone number;
- e-mail address;
- major field of study;
- dates of attendance;
- enrollment status;
- class level;
- expected date of graduation;
- degrees and awards received;
- most recent previous institution attended;
- participation in officially recognized activities and sports;
- and the height and weight of members of athletic teams.
Students may request that the College restrict the release of directory information by submitting a written request to the Registrar’s Office. Such restrictions remain in effect until cancelled in writing by the student. Directory information required for course or classroom participation may not be withheld from faculty and students connected with the particular course. In addition, enrollment as a student and attendance at or participation in classes and other College activities constitutes an agreement by the student to the College’s use and distribution of the student’s image or voice in photographs, videotapes, audiotapes, and electronic reproductions of such classes and other College activities.
As permitted by FERPA, College officials have access to student directory and non-directory information when a legitimate educational interest exists for specific education records. A legitimate educational interest exists when the College has determined that a College official needs to know specific information to accomplish academic, instructional, advisory, administrative, research, supervisory, disciplinary or other educational responsibilities assigned by the College. College officials may include employees, faculty, staff, trustees, counsel, designated representatives of Pomona College, The Claremont Colleges and Claremont University Consortium, and contracted agents and agencies of the College. Pomona College may outsource some operations requiring the disclosure of information from education records. Providers of such services include the National Student Clearinghouse. College officials, including contracted service providers, who receive education records must comply with all FERPA regulations regarding re-disclosure and the privacy of such education records.
In addition, under FERPA, and in compliance with other federal and local regulations, privacy rights in the postsecondary environment are reassigned from parents to students. Nevertheless, FERPA permits institutions to disclose information from education records to parents and to other third party entities in specific situations and under certain conditions. Among these situations are the following:
- To officials of another school where the student seeks, intends, or has enrolled;
- In connection with the student’s request for or receipt of financial aid;
- To certain federal, state or local government authorities in connection with the audit or evaluation of educational programs (these government authorities may further disclose information to outside entities that are designated by them to conduct any audit, evaluation or enforcement or compliance activity on their behalf);
- To U.S. military recruiters;
- To certain entities conducting studies or audits on behalf of the College, by federal, state, or local education authorities, or by professional and other educational organizations;
- In compliance with court orders and subpoenæ;
- Where health and safety are at risk or in the event of student status changes;
- When violations to federal, state, or local regulations have occurred and violations to institutional policy have been determined in regard to crimes of violence or non-forcible sex acts and, for students under the age of 21, the use or possession of alcohol or other controlled substances; and
- Per additional contingencies set forth in FERPA.
General Complaint Procedures
Pomona College takes very seriously complaints and concerns regarding the institution. If you have a complaint regarding Pomona College, you may present your complaint to:
- The Dean of Students, Avis Hinkson (firstname.lastname@example.org or DeanofStudents@pomona.edu or 909-621-8017, or
- The Campus Ombuds, Conchita Serri (email@example.com)
These contacts will provide you with an explanation of the campus process for addressing your particular complaint(s) and answer any questions you may have to assure you a fair process. If you believe that your complaint warrants further attention after exhausting all the steps outlined in the writing given to you by the Dean of Students or Campus Ombuds, you may contact:
The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) if your complaint is about the institution’s compliance with academic program quality and accrediting standards. WASC is the academic accrediting body for Pomona College.
If you believe that your complaint continues to warrant further consideration after exhausting the review of either WASC or the investigative team representing Pomona College, you may submit a complaint to the Attorney General of the State of California by filing a complaint form with the Public Inquiry Unit of the California State Department of Justice at:
- Public Inquiry Unit: 916-322-3360; 800-952-5225; fax: 916-323-5341, or
- Online form to submit a complaint to the Attorney General of California
The Attorney General’s Office will review the process through which the campus attempted to resolve your complaint. If the process complies with the written outline, the Attorney General’s Office will, for the purposes of state oversight, consider the matter closed. If the Attorney General determines that the process through which the campus attempted to resolve your complaint did not comply with its published process, the Attorney General may request reconsideration by Pomona College. The Attorney General’s Office also has oversight of Pomona College as authorized through the “Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act” [Cal. Gov’t Code § 12598], which provides public means to submit complaints regarding non-profit colleges and universities that abuse their status under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (23 U.S.C. §501(c)(3). The California Attorney General is given broad powers to undertake law enforcement investigations and legal actions to protect the public interest under Cal. Gov’t Code § 12598.
Nothing in this disclosure limits any right that you may have to seek civil or criminal legal action to resolve your complaints. Pomona College has provided this disclosure to you in compliance with the requirements of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, as regulated in CFR 34, Sections 600.9 (b) (3) and 668.43(b). If anything in this disclosure is out of date, please notify the Dean of Students.
Pursuant to Section 600.9 of Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations and in accord with California Education Code Agreement 94878.9, an individual may contact the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education for review of a complaint. The bureau may be contacted at:
Address: 2535 Capitol Oaks Drive, Suite 400
Sacramento CA 95833
Website: Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education