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States Need Guidance on Data Collection

STUDENT PRIVACY—U.S.

September 29, 2010

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report saying that states need better guidance on acceptable use and collection practices under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) for postsecondary education and employment data. According to the GAO study, 26 states collect some employment-related data on postsecondary graduates to use for various purposes, but "many states are unsure about how to collect and share the information while still protecting student privacy under FERPA." The GAO outlines potential approaches for collection and recommends that education officials clarify the appropriate means of collection and sharing of graduates' employment information under FERPA.
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