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Inquiries Regarding Student Information or Student Records

APS employees are often contacted with regard to legal matters to which APS is not a party. Examples include:

  1. Divorce cases or child custody disputes. Attorneys for one of the parents may contact teachers, counselors, nurses, principals, diagnosticians, etc., by phone and inquire about a particular child.
  2. APS personnel are also sometimes contacted by attorneys involved in the defense or prosecution of juveniles.
  3. APS personnel have been contacted when a child's parents sue a doctor or hospital for malpractice which allegedly resulted in injury to the child.

The administration prefers that APS personnel not become involved in legal disputes or other matters in which the District is not a party to the legal action. APS employees are discouraged from meeting or talking with anyone other than a student's parent or guardian about a particular student. In particular, APS personnel are discouraged from being involved in disputes between parents. In all cases, APS personnel are directed to refrain from volunteering information to anyone whom they do not know personally over the phone. In every case where APS employees are contacted by an attorney, attorney's agent, or any officer of the court regarding APS students, personnel, or other district business, they should refer that inquiry to their immediate supervisor. The supervisors are to contact the Deputy Superintendent.

In some cases, teachers or other personnel such as counselors and diagnosticians are to serve as a witness or an expert witness. APS personnel are directed not to volunteer as witnesses unless they have checked with the Deputy Superintendent. Leave with pay will be granted to a teacher where absence from duty is required by a lawful subpoena to testify in a court proceeding or in an administrative hearing or protecting one's own interest. Witness fees received will be submitted to the business office.

With regard to requests for student records from a person other than the parents, student (if over 18 years old), guardian, or another public school district, all personnel should check with their immediate supervisor before providing student records. Supervisors will then clear that request through the Deputy Superintendent.

Cross Ref.:

Legal Ref.: Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974

NSBA/NEPN Classification: JRC

Revised: May 1995
Revised: April 1996
Revised: May 1997

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