Essay Sample on Decision-Making in School or Institutional Leadership

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  659 Words
Date:  2022-11-16


Schools and education institutions are subjected to a variety of laws which influence the decision-making process by institutional leaders. A couple of laws have been adopted by the state and federal government which impact on the decision-making process of leaders in schools and higher learning institutions (Fuller, 2017). Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Cleary Act are some of the state laws that are incorporated in decision-making with regards to the privacy and confidentiality of the student's information and interaction with personal details (Fuller, 2017). FERPA provides a framework under which institutions can share students' information. This provides a guideline to institutional leaders with a decision-making framework in the dissemination of students' information. Personally Identifiable information (PII) sharing is permitted without prior consent as long as the seven exclusions of FERPA are not violated (Lowenstein, 2016). HIPAA provides a guideline in 6the sharing of student's health and psychological information. HIPAA eliminates the misappropriations and misconception of FERPA while dealing with students' medical and health information. FOIA, on the other hand, provides for an outline on access to information and information disclosure procedures. Access and disclosure of information are however subject to nine statute exemptions which serve as the limitations to falsefully access to information. The federal Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act) calls for colleges and universities to disclose safety information on campus as well as meeting some basic requirements in handling students missing cases, emergency situations, and sexual violence. Therefore, decisions with respect to the information safety and provisions of FERPA, HIPAA, FOIA, and Clery Act. The education leaders need to consider the provisions of these Act while dealing with information dissemination of information on students. The need to protect the privacy and confidentiality of student information is provided under the acts giving the institutions' leaders operational framework while addressing relevant students' information.

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Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulates the management of release of records on students from educational institutions. Higher education leaders are faced with a wide range of administrative issues with relation to student's information. According to von Feigenblatt, Dominguez & Valles, 2015), FERPA has undergone 9 amendments improving the provisions of the act. FERPA provides for the restrictions on the provision of information on a student with no clear consent of the student or the student. The amendments modified the provisions of FERPA over the years have been adopted by institutional leaders in delivering significant information on students (von Feigenblatt, Dominguez & Valles, 2015). Decisions on the information on students are arrived at with consideration of the parents and partners tasked with financing the student's tuition activities Lowenstein, 2016). These are the main stakeholders in the provision of information. The key stakeholders in the financing of the students warrant the students, parents or any other recognized partners in need to consent to the information access request before access to their personal information is accorded. On the contrary, the transition of students to adult can be acknowledged by educational institutions and therefore transfers the consent powers from the parents and partners to the student (von Feigenblatt, Dominguez & Valles, 2015).


In conclusion, the different state and federal laws adopted across different platforms provide educational leaders with relevant details applicable in decision-making and leadership of the institutions. The health, information safety and confidentiality and protection of information access are provided along a particular framework that outlines the disclosure procedure and the limitations of the act to avoid violations.


Fuller, M. (2017). An Update on the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. New Directions for Institutional Research, 2016(172), 25-36.

Lowenstein, H. (2016). The great wall of FERPA: Surmounting a law's barrier to assurance of learning. Journal of Legal Studies Education, 33(1), 129-164.

von Feigenblatt, C. D. O. F., Dominguez, D. C., & Valles, J. E. G. (2015). The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Right (FERPA). Journal of Alternative Perspectives in the Social Sciences, 6(3), 329-335.

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