Release of Educational Information for a Deceased Student

According to FERPA, the privacy interests of an individual expire with that individual’s death. Accordingly, the FPCO (Family Privacy Compliance Office) has determined that the disposition of records held by an institution pertaining to a deceased eligible student is not a FERPA issue but a matter of institutional policy and/or state law.

Bucks County Community College follows the following procedure regarding the record of a deceased student:

  • Identify the student as deceased in the College’s administrative software (Datatel)
  • Remove all address information and replace it with an address line 1 of DECEASED via the NAE screen
  • Secure all information by adding the privacy code of “E” – Secure Everything, to the student’s record via the BIO screen
  • Convert all paper documents to the appropriate archiving media

Within the first year following the death of a student, the College will release the educational records of the individual student under the following condition(s):

  • The student has submitted a signed Authorization to Release Educational Records form which designed the person(s) eligible to request and/or receive educational records. This information is held in the student’s e-record on the STRK screen. Authorized person must submit a signed request for records which can be mailed, faxed, or hand-delivered to Admissions.
  • The student has officially designated the person(s) as an emergency contact. This information is held in the student’s e-record on the EMER screen. Authorized person must submit a signed request for records which can be mailed, faxed, or hand-delivered  to Admissions
  • The person(s) is the Executor/Executrix of the student’s estate
  • In response to a legal subpoena

The College will respond to requests for records in a timely manner, but records, with the exception of an unofficial transcript, will not be produced the same day. Requested documents will be mailed to the requestor.

After one year has elapsed following the death of an individual student, the College may release the educational records of an individual student at its discretion.