We welcome your feedback.
Please answer this ^AP(mlh-shared/snippets/dvass-survey-snippet^.
A student's parent or legal guardian; an eligible student (a student who is
fourteen (14) years old or a student who has entered the ninth (9th)
grade or an agency legally authorized to act on behalf of the student in
place of or in conjunction with the father, mother, or legal guardian. 603
Code of Massachusetts Regulations (CMR) 23.02 (2006). Examples of such agencies
include the Department of Children and Families (DCF) and the Department of Youth
Generally, yes. Both mothers and fathers can usually have access to their
child's school records. Non-custodial parents can usually have access to these
Certain abusive "non-custodial" parents are not allowed to see or get copies
of their children's school records. An abusive non-custodial parent is
not allowed access to the records if:
Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 71, section 34H(a)
A "non-custodial" parent, for purposes of access to school records, includes:
A "non-custodial" parent does not include:
A parent who has "legal" custody has the right and responsibility to make
the major decisions regarding the child's welfare, including education, medical
care, and emotional, moral and religious development. "Sole" legal custody
is where one parent has the right and responsibility to make these major decisions,
and "shared" legal custody is where both parents have the right and responsibility
to make these major decisions.
For the purposes of school records, a "custodial" parent is a parent with
whom the child lives.
All parents must submit a written request to the school principal.
Massachusetts General Laws (G.L.) c. 71, § 34H(b).
Yes. For non-custodial parents there is a 21 day waiting period (see Question
12) after the school notifies the custodial parent of the request. There
is no waiting period for custodial parents. Custodial parents are entitled school records "as soon as practicable and within ten days
after the initial request." 603 CMR 23.07. If you are a custodial parent, it
is important to be sure that school officials know that the child lives with
No. The school must first review the student's record for any documents limiting
or restricting parental access to the student's records or information which
have been provided to the school or school district. G.L. c. 71, § 34H(c).
The school must immediately notify a custodial parent of a request for school
records made by a non-custodial parent. G.L. c. 71, § 34H(c). If the
non-custodial parent requests the records, and there are no documents in the
file limiting access, the school will provide the material after a waiting
The school must notify the custodial parent that a request has been made.
The school must then wait 21 days before giving the records to a non-custodial
parent who has requested the school records. After a non-custodial parent requests
the records, the school must immediately notify the custodial parent by certified
and first class mail, in the custodial parent's primary language and in
English of the request. The notice must inform the custodial parent that the
school records information will be provided to the requesting parent after
twenty-one (21) days unless the custodial parent provides the principal of
the school with documentation of any court order which prohibits contact with
the child, or prohibits the distribution of the school records or if there
is a temporary or permanent order issued to provide protection to the child
in the custodial parent's custody from abuse by the requesting parent unless
the protective order or any subsequent order modifies the protective order
and specifically allows access to the school records information. G.L. c. 71, §34H(c)
If the custodial parent does not provide the school with documentation that
the non-custodial parent is not eligible for access to the school records,
the school will provide the non-custodial parent with the records.
If the custodial parent does provide the school within 21 days documentation
that the non-custodial parent is not eligible for access to the school records,
the school must not provide the non-custodial parent with the records.
Custodial parents who do not want the non-custodial parent to have access
to the school records must, within the 21 day waiting period, provide the principal
with documentation of any court order which prohibits or restricts contact
with the child, prohibits distribution of school record information, or which
is an order issued to protect the child from abuse by the non-custodial parent
requesting the records. For the documentation to be effective in keeping the
school from distributing the records, the orders should contain one or more
of the provisions described in Question 3.
If there is a current order that has one or more of the provisions listed
in Question 3, immediately give a copy to the principal. Also, you can write
a letter to the principal saying that you are the custodial parent and that
if the non-custodial parent asks for the child's school records, the school
is to notify you. Ask the school to put this letter into the child's records.
The law is not clear on this issue. If you are concerned about risks of abuse
to yourself or your child or disruptive interference with your child's education
should the non-custodial parent come to the school or attend teacher meetings,
you should inform the school about your concerns. You should also give
the school documentation of any court order that prohibits access to the records.
In circumstances like this, you can request the school not to permit the other
parent to meet with school personnel, come to meetings, or come to the school.
Everyone should remember that communications among teachers, staff, and parents
are likely to include information that is contained in the student's record,
and that where one of the parents is ineligible to have access to that information
the wisest course is not to permit ineligible parents to be involved in these
Parents who are eligible to receive school record information are not automatically
allowed to participate in school proceedings about which they have received
notice. G.L. c. 71, § 34H(a).
Non-custodial parents who are eligible to receive school record information
are not automatically authorized to participate in school proceedings and decisions
unless there is a custody order that says they are. G.L. c. 71, § 34H(a).
Thus a non-custodial parent who does not have shared or sole "legal" custody
is not authorized to participate in these proceedings and decisions.
The student record consists of the transcript, and the temporary record, including
all information recording and computer tapes, microfilm, microfiche, or any
other materials concerning a student that is organized on the basis of the
student's name. The temporary record consists of all information in the student
record which is not contained in the transcript and is important to the educational
process. 603 CMR 23.02
The law requires that custodial parents' electronic and postal residential
and work addresses and telephone information be removed from school records
when they are released to a non-custodial parent. 603 CMR 23.07(5)(e). One
precaution you can take is to review the file with school personnel to be sure
that the record has no address or telephone information.
Yes. 603 CMR 23.07(5)(e).
9am and 4pm