Dallas College recognizes the importance of maintaining certain records for each individual, and these records can confirm the individual's educational progress. To protect the rights of individuals, the college has established policies and guidelines which describe the records maintained and provisions for releasing information. These rules conform to state and federal laws (the U.S. Department of Education guidelines for the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended, known as the Buckley Amendment, or FERPA).
If the individual referred to the CARE Team is already receiving care at the college counseling center or an outside mental health provider, information about that individual may not be obtained by the team from those agencies without written authorization from the individual in question, in accordance with federal and state law.
Exceptions to the Right to Privacy
In certain situations that concern protecting the health and safety of an individual or others in the community, members of the CARE Team may provide information to each other, faculty/staff involved in a particular case or connected outside parties such as a parent or guardian. This falls under the “Need to Know” guidelines and “Health and Safety notification” areas of FERPA. The college also has a duty to warn members of the community when potentially harmful or dangerous situations have been reported and after a review by campus officials warrant such notification. In these situations, the CARE Team may breach confidentiality in order to warn identified victims.