Faculty and Staff FAQs
FAQs on Student Privacy for Faculty and Staff
- A student can elect to prevent the release of all directory information by submitting the Request to Prevent Disclosure of Student Information form to the Office of the University Registrar.
- You will see the designation “confidential” on class rosters for these students.
- Faculty and staff may still contact the student regarding class business, but should avoid releasing any student information, including email address with any one else (including other students).
- Students with the confidential indicator should be not included in group e-mails to your class in a way that shares their email (Bcc all group emails).
- A student may have many reasons for applying this hold, including reasons related to personal safety, so it is important to avoid any inadvertent release of student information.
The Solomon Amendment is a federal law that requires institutions of higher education to provide “student recruitment information” for all students who are at least seventeen (17) years of age and enrolled for at least one credit hour at their institution to military recruiters. The Department of Education has determined that the Solomon Amendment supersedes FERPA and even if a university has a policy of not releasing student directory information it is obligated comply with requests for “student recruiting information”.
Students are not permitted to restrict the release of their “Student Recruiting Information” specifically to the military, but if a student choses to withhold the release of all directory information under FERPA by completing the Request to Prevent Disclosure of Student Information colleges may not release it to the military either.
At Mason student recruiting information includes the following:
- Address (permanent)
- Telephone (permanent)
- Level or UG Class (GR, Senior, Junior, ND, etc.)
Information released will be for the current semester. If the request is received between semesters, the information will be for the upcoming semester.
The information shared is confidential and is to be used for military recruiting purposes only. Student data must be destroyed once used.
Procedure for Requesting Student Recruiting Information
Requests for “student recruiting information” can be made online using our Solomon Amendment Request Form for each of the 12 eligible units within the five branches of service:
Army: Army, Army Reserve, Army National Guard
Navy: Navy, Navy Reserve
Marine Corps: Marine Corps, Marine Corps Reserve
Air Force: Air Force, Air Force Reserve, Air Force National Guard
Coast Guard: Coast Guard, Coast Guard Reserve
If you prefer, you may send requests via fax or postal mail, on military letterhead which clearly identifies the military recruiting branch or office to:
Office of the University Registrar
4400 University Drive, MSN 3D1
Fairfax, VA 22030
Directory Information at Mason consists of the following:
- Student Name
- Major Field of Study
- Dates of Attendance
- Enrollment Status
- Previous Institutions
- Class Level
- Degrees and Awards Received
- Participation in Officially Recognized Sports and Activities
- Weight and Height of Athletes
Mason defines the following as Limited Directory Information:
- *Student ID (G Number)
- *Date of Birth
This information should only be used for verification purposes, such as to confirm a students identity over the phone, and in conjunction with a legitimate educational interest.
Yes, IF you have a legitimate education interest.
Legitimate Educational Interest:
- When a school official need access to education records in the course of performing their job duties at Mason
- Must be necessary for your job role or completing job tasks
- Must be used for official Mason business within the scope of your employment
- The information is used only for the purpose for which it was obtained
- Access is limited only to the records required to fulfill your job duties
- Curiosity is not a legitimate educational interest
- While you may return papers and/or examinations by mail, the safest practice is to return papers personally to the student.
- Never ask students to pass out graded work.
- Do not post student grades on a wall or leave graded assignments in a box outside an office
- All George Mason University employees who handle or have access to education records, including all instructional/research and administrative/professional faculty, must complete FERPA training session upon employment, and then every two years.
- FERPA training is also required to receive Banner access.
- Every individual doing any work on behalf of Mason must comply with policies and guidelines set forth by FERPA, Mason, Virginia and the Federal Government.