How to access school records
Non-custodial parents frequently have trouble getting their children's school records. If the school is denying you those records the school may be in violation of Federal and State law. Federal and State laws govern public schools or any school that accepts Federal or State funding and any private school that is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. You have a right to your child's school records as long as your rights have not been terminated or your child custody order (or divorce decree) does not bar you have access to those records.
As the parent, you have access to your children's records under Public Law PL 93-380 also known as the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), 88 Stat. 571(1974): 20 USCA 12232g. Federal Register on June 17, 1976, found on page 24672 - subpart B, Section 99.11 GUARANTEES your right to view school records in their entirety.
Also in 1983, Texas Legislative Session amended Section 153.073, effective September 1, 1983, requiring schools to allow non-custodial parents access to student records. It states "A parent appointed as a conservator of a child has at all times the right of access to medical, dental, psychological, and education records of the child."
When refused this access after making the Principal aware of the Federal and State laws seek assistance from the school Superintendent. Do not be afraid to exercise your rights to take an active part in your children's education.
Still having trouble getting access to school records
Write a letter to the school Principal informing him/her of your intent to view your children's school records. Inform the Principal of the applicable Federal and State laws that grant access to your children's records. Inform him/her of your intent to take action if he/she failed to comply with your request. Send copies of the letter to the school Superintendent and the School District Trustees.
Get involved and stay involved
Become involved. Call the teacher. Ask for a parent/teacher conference. Attend or join the PTA. Volunteer for school activities. Volunteer to be a "room parent".
Show your children and school that you are a loving and caring parent.
Don't give them a reason to think of you as a part-time parent.
If you have trouble seeing your child or need to modify your custody order then contact America Family Law Center for help.
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