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FERPA Annual Notification

Annual FERPA Notification

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their educational records.

The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the seminary receives a written request for access.

Students should submit to the Registrar, Academic Dean, head of the academic department or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The seminary official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the seminary official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading.

Students may ask the seminary to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the seminary official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.  If the seminary decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the seminary will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the seminary in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research or support staff position; a person or company with whom the seminary has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, collection agent, pastor or mentor, and the National Student Clearinghouse); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.  A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.

Upon request, the seminary may disclose education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.

The seminary may disclose personally identifiable information from education records to appropriate parties in connection with an emergency if knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals.

The seminary reserves the right to release, without consent, personally identifiable information (PII) that is designated as Directory Information. If the student does not wish to have all or part of this information released without consent, he or she must notify the Registration Office, in writing, and the request will be honored within the academic year the letter is received. Students must re-petition at the start of each academic year.

The Seminary has designated the following personally identifiable information as Directory Information:

  • Student’s Name
  • Spouse’s Name
  • Children’s Name(s)
  • Mailing Address
  • Campus Address
  • E-mail Address
  • Home Phone Number
  • Student’s Photograph
  • Degree Program and Dates of Attendance
  • Graduation Date
  • Honors & Awards Received

As of January 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education’s FERPA regulations expand the circumstances under which a student’s education records and personally identifiable information (PII) contained in such records — including the student’s Social Security Number, grades, or other private information — may be accessed without the student’s consent.

First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities (“Federal and State Authorities”) may allow access to a student’s records and PII without the student’s consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is “principally engaged in the provision of education,” such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution. Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to a student’s education records and PII without the student’s consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when Gordon-Conwell objects to or does not request such research. Federal and State Authorities must obtain certain use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they authorize to receive the student’s PII, but the Authorities need not maintain direct control over such entities. In addition, in connection with Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, State Authorities may collect, compile, permanently retain, and share without a student’s consent PII from the student’s education records, and they may track the student’s participation in education and other programs by linking such PII to other personal information about the student that they obtain from other Federal or State data sources, including workforce development, unemployment insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant student records systems.

The student has the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW.
Washington, DC, 20202-4605

Written request for review and/or amendment of record(s) should be made to the director of the office which contains the record being sought. Education records are located in the following offices at the Hamilton campus:

Type of Education Record Custodian of Records Office & Address
Academic Record & Judicial Committee Records Registrar Registration Office, Kerr Building
Mentored Ministry Records Director of Mentored Ministry Mentored Ministry Office, Academic Center
Counseling Program Records Coordinator of Counseling Program Counseling Department Office, Academic Center
Financial Accounts Director of Student Accounts Students Accounts, Kerr Building
Financial Aid Transcripts & Scholarship Records Director of Student Financial Aid Financial Aid Office, Kerr Building
Student Employment Records Director of Human Resources Human Resources Office, Kerr Building
Judicial Appeals & Byington Applications Academic Dean Academic Dean’s Office, Academic Center
Guidance Committee Records & Community Life Reports Dean of Students Student Life Services Office, Kerr Building
Incident Reports Campus Safety Campus Safety Office, Kerr Building
Housing Leases, Dormitory Contracts, and Rent Records Housing Manager Housing Office, Kerr Building

 

Correspondence is maintained by the office with which the student is communicating.

 

 Policies and Procedures – Boston

Registration Policies and Procedures

Registration Office
CUME’s registration office is available during scheduled operation hours and may be contacted at (617) 427-7293, ext. 1634 or through email at [email protected].

Student Concerns Regarding Accrediting Standards
Students who have concerns regarding the school’s compliance with accrediting standards should submit a written record of their concerns to the Vice President for Academic Affairs.  Without written details, no action will be taken.  The Vice President for Academic Affairs will then take appropriate action to respond to the issue.  A written response addressing the concern and any actions that have or may be taken will be issued to the student.  Gordon-Conwell will maintain a record of such formal student concerns for review by the Board of Trustees.

Registering for a Course
At the beginning of each session, admitted and/or provisional student seeking enrollment in a particular class are required to fill out and sign a registration form listing their course selection for that particular session, and return it to the Registration Office. Students who do not follow this standard are understood to be courtesy auditors in the class and will not receive credit for the course. MACO Only Courses are designed for MACO students only; these courses may not be petitioned by students in any other degree programs.

Automatic Non-Registration for Past-Due Accounts (Academic Holds)
Students whose accounts are not paid in full from a past semester are automatically disqualified for registration in the next semester. Submitted registration forms will be returned to students.

Semlink Registration
Students may register for Semlink courses during the Spring, Fall, and first session of summer terms, following the same registration policies for regular courses. A Semlink Registration Form must be submitted together with the current session Registration Form, and all Semlink courses must also be written down on the regular registration form. International (F-1) students are only allowed to take one (1) Semlink course per semester. Semlink Exams are proctored at the Jackson Library on Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.; and from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.. Students should contact the Semlink office and have their exams forwarded to [email protected].

Adding and Dropping Courses
Students may add or drop a course in any session within the Add/Drop deadlines noted in the Academic Calendar for that session. Courses that are not added or dropped within this specific date may be assessed a penalty fee. Also, all courses that are not officially dropped by using an Add/Drop form will be considered attended in full and will not be granted a refund.

Pass/Fail Requests
Students may petition the Registrar’s office for a Pass/Fail at the time of registration or within the time frame indicated on the Pass/Fail form. Whenever a Pass/Fail is granted to a student, it will not be reversed for any reason.

Extension Requests
Students may petition for a coursework extension (including Semlink) through the Registrar’s Office. A formal petition form is available in the Registration Office or online. Whenever an extension is granted to a student, withdrawal from the course is not possible—the student will fail the course if the work is not completed by the agreed date.

General Petition
Students may use the General Petition form to address any other specific request concerning their programs at GCTS—CUME. The General Petition form is available at the Registration Office or online.

Directed Study
Students may petition to do Directed Study courses if they have a requirement for graduation that cannot be fulfilled by attending the scheduled on campus courses, or through the online courses available in that semester. Please fill out a form and return it to the Registration Office for approval.

Courtesy and Official Audit
Active students and GCTS alumnae/alumni may register as courtesy auditors in any given semester based on space availability. A special Courtesy Audit form is available at the Registration Office. Whenever the official session registration form is used—students will be processed as Official Auditors and will be charged accordingly. Please note that the auditing fee is non-refundable.

NT/OT Competency Exam and Biblical Languages Proficiency Exams
The NT/OT competency exams as well as Greek and Hebrew proficiency exams are administered at the beginning of the Spring and Fall Semesters as specified on the Academic Calendar. Sign up forms are available online and at the CUME Registration Office.

Boston Theological Institute (BTI) Registration
Students may petition for BTI courses during Fall, Spring, and January sessions. BTI registration forms are available at the Registration office and follow the same registration policies for regular GCTS courses.

Transcript Requests:
Two forms of GCTS transcripts are available to all Students—Official and Advisor’s Transcripts. Your student account must be paid in full prior to placing a request for any transcript. Official Transcripts can be obtained only by submitting a Transcript Request Form to the Hamilton Campus Registration Office. Please fax all Official Transcript Requests to (978) 646- 4566.

Course Grades
Grades can be accessed through the CAMS student portal. Students may access CAMS using their assigned usernames and Student ID numbers. Keep in mind you must submit a course evaluation before accessing your grade.

Record Retention
Comprehensive student records are maintained for all current students.  Upon graduation, formal withdrawal, or a cessation of enrollment, students’ physical records may be purged of non-essential items and the remaining files will be held in archive for five years.  At that time, most physical records are normally destroyed.  Essential electronic records (e.g., transcripts) are held indefinitely.

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Student Services – Policies and Procedures

Admissions Office
CUME’s admission office may be contacted during the admission process with all questions regarding admission status. Phone: (617) 427-7293 ext. 1633; Fax: (617) 541-3432; Email: [email protected].

Health Insurance
Students who are registered for 6 credits or more will be automatically charged health insurance premium. Insured students may waive the charges at www.universityhealthplans.com. For questions, call (800) 437-6448.

The Bruce Jackson Memorial Library at CUME
For library services, please contact the Director of Library Services, Mark Thomas. Phone: (617) 427-7293; ext. 1653; Email: [email protected].

Graded Papers from Professors
Students’ graded work returned from professors is available at the Jackson Library during regular operation hours.

Change of Name, Address, or Personal Information
Students may use a Change of Information form at the CUME Registration Office to petition these changes.

Webmail & CAMS:
All admitted and registered students at GCTS—CUME are assigned a GCTS—CUME email account, and a CAMS Student portal account to access academic records and personal information. To obtain your Username and Password, please contact [email protected].

Pierce Center for Disciple Building / Soul Care Groups
All students are welcome to participate in a bi-weekly soul care group hosted by pierce fellows. The Pierce fellowship longs to see Gordon-Conwell students living joyfully as a community of Christ-centered, Holy Spirit-empowered disciple-builders, prioritizing life-long intimacy with Jesus Christ. For more information contact Dr. Tom Griffith at [email protected] or by phone at (617) 427-7293, ext. 1649.

Personal Grievances
Personal grievances regarding academic issues or matters arising from CUME should be directed to the attention of Dr. Seong Hyun Park, Dean of the Boston Campus. Formal complaints can be submitted by petition to his office at the CUME campus. Dr. Park can also be contacted by email at [email protected].

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