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Is this common at Liberal Arts colleges?

Bill73Bill73 Registered User Posts: 214 Junior Member
My sister went to high school with a girl that enrolled at a small LAC in Illinois, and during her first year on campus, she missed some classes. As a result, her professors called her parents and complained that she needed to be more responsible with her studies.

Is this common at small schools?
Post edited by Bill73 on
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Replies to: Is this common at Liberal Arts colleges?

  • M's MomM's Mom Registered User Posts: 4,562 Senior Member
    I have heard of profs at LACs getting in touch with a student who has gone missing in action to ask what's up, but never the parent. What school is this? Calling a parent is highly intrusive and frankly, sounds highly unlikely.
  • Bill73Bill73 Registered User Posts: 214 Junior Member
    I'd rather not say. I use the school's facilities, so I'd rather not drag its name through the mud. :-)
  • xraymancsxraymancs Forum Champion Graduate School Posts: 4,391 Forum Champion
    Unless a student has signed a Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) release, the university should not talk to a parent about academic performance if the student is over 18. I would say this behavior is not common and it is not proper. My school is small (2400 undergraduates) and as advisors, we are not supposed to speak to anyone without the 18 year old student's consent.
  • labeisouplabeisoup Registered User Posts: 136 Junior Member
    mud. :-)

    Was your sister contacted first? Maybe her professors got very concerned after they couldn't get her to comply?
  • annasdadannasdad Registered User Posts: 4,827 Senior Member
    I have to doubt the story. Not questioning the OP's veracity, but it sounds like it's a third-hand account, and a fish story.
  • Davidabb84Davidabb84 - Posts: 1,355 Senior Member
    Agreed, unless a FERPA release is signed what the college has done is highly illegal.
  • zobrowardzobroward Registered User Posts: 3,933 Senior Member
    ^^^
    It was explained to me one time that the only thing that is illegal is a sick bird
    ill eagle (it took me a minute at the time to)
    in other words, maybe the story is fishy , maybe not but illegal is not the reason to not believe it.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 26,563 Senior Member
    If there were a legit concern, it would not be profs who would call. Sounds like a story that has mutated on its own.

    Ferpa, btw, makes interesting reading. If a child is a dependent on your tax forms, parents are allowed certain info. You'd be surprised. http://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/faq.html
  • Davidabb84Davidabb84 - Posts: 1,355 Senior Member
    If it's true than it should be reported. It would be as if your doctor called your parents to tell them that you smoke. When someone becomes a legal adult, they have privacy rights and colleges just can't go around ignoring those rights, they can - and should - get some hefty fines and sanctions for that.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 26,563 Senior Member
    Maybe our posts crossed. You need to see what Ferpa actually states.

    Also this: Primary control over a student’s records shifts from the parents to the student when the student enrolls in college, even if the student is still a minor. Despite this, institutions can still disclose information to parents for a variety circumstances, including if the parent claims the student as a federal tax dependent; if the student is under 21 and has violated school alcohol or drug policies; or if the institution believes there to be a health or safety emergency involving the student (McDonald, 2008).

    Perhaps the LAC here was exceptionally conservative and protective; perhaps the students allow more contact with parents than we usually run into. Or, maybe this is another urban myth.
  • Bill73Bill73 Registered User Posts: 214 Junior Member
    "I have to doubt the story. Not questioning the OP's veracity, but it sounds like it's a third-hand account, and a fish story. "

    Not a third-hand account at all. My sister is childhood friends with the person who was missing class, and she actually told her this story.
  • annasdadannasdad Registered User Posts: 4,827 Senior Member
    first hand: the friend

    second hand: your sister

    third hand: you

    It just sounds like a made-up, or greatly enhanced, story. Especially since the college where this allegedly happened is not being revealed.
  • Bill73Bill73 Registered User Posts: 214 Junior Member
    "Especially since the college where this allegedly happened is not being revealed. "

    Why is that relevant? I already mentioned that I use this school's facilities, so I'd like to keep in the school's good graces.

    I have already determined the identity of one person on this site by the content of his or her posts, so I'm sure it wouldn't be hard for the powers that be at this school to identify me if I "outed" their college.
  • snarlatronsnarlatron Registered User Posts: 1,597 Senior Member
    The ingredients to almost every urban legend: Source is FOAF (Friend of a Friend), and pertinent details are missing for whatever stated reason.

    This event, at least as related here, did not happen.
  • jym626jym626 Registered User Posts: 54,031 Senior Member
    Maybe the parents saw something on their daughter's facebook page and pretended they got a call from the school
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This discussion has been closed.