Parent Rights Relating to Educational Records

When the student reaches the age of 18 or begins attending a postsecondary institution, regardless of age, FERPA rights transfer from the parent to the student. This means that parents may not obtain any of their student's education records without the written consent of the student.

Since student grades are part of the education record, they are protected under FERPA and, therefore, may not be released to parents. Students have access to their semester grades through LionPATH.

In addition, students may provide consent for their parent to view grades and other portions of their education record via LionPATH as follows:

  1. The student must grant their parent delegated access in LionPATH by selecting "Main Menu > Self Service > Student Delegation > Guardian Options" in the breadcrumbs menu navigation and following the instructions to grant delegated access to the Grades function.
  2. Delegates will be notified via email that they have been granted delegated access in LionPATH. [Note: The email will be sent the email address the student entered during the setup of delegated access.]
  3. Follow the instructions provided in the email to setup your LionPATH login username and password.
  4. Once logged into LionPATH, you can access any of the approved functions for your student.

It is important to note that Penn State does not have a means for students to unilaterally waive their FERPA rights. Penn State's procedure requires each release of any portion of the student's education record to a person or entity outside of the University to be individually approved by the student by working with the releasing department.

For more information, see the U.S. Department of Education's brochure, A Parent Guide to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).