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N Cal Atty
N Cal Atty, Lawyer
Category: Education Law
Satisfied Customers: 9390
Experience:  attorney at self
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Our son attends a Waldorf School and they do not have a standard

Customer Question

Our son attends a Waldorf School and they do not have a standard transcript like mainstream public or private schools do. Instead, the teacher generates a very personalized 'year-end report' at the end of every academic year. While our son does not qualify for an IEP (we just had him go through the assessment with our own public school district), he was diagnosed with very mild Tourettes about four years ago. We shared that information with our son's teacher last academic year so that he can better help our son manage his verbal tics in the classroom. Since then, the tics have gone away and our son doesn't seem to exhibit any signs of verbal or motor tics anymore. However, the teacher did write in last year's report that Ryan was diagnosed with Tourettes and has been working diligently to manage it, with much success. It's a great report for our family to see, the problem is, the year-end report is also the school's version of "transcript". So now that we are getting ready to apply to high school, this record with the medical diagnosis for Tourettes is included in our son's report and we do not want the school to forward that information on to prospective high schools, especially since he doesn't even qualify for IEP since his symptoms are too mild.
The school appear to be reluctant to modify the reports. What are our rights as a family to demand that they remove private information?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Education Law
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
Have you pointed out to the school that it would violate the student's rights to keep his medical information private if the report as written is disclosed?
Which State are you in?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
We live in Northern California. We have told the school that while we authorize the school to forward transcripts we do not want private information shared with other high schools. The issue is Waldorf Schools do not have "transcripts", they have a detailed narrative of the child for each year. So in order to keep confidential information private, they would have to go back and revise the report. Our question here is if it is a violation of the student's right if the school chooses to forward the report as it is?
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 2 years ago.
The answer is Yes.
Civil Code:
56.13. A recipient of medical information pursuant to an
authorization as provided by this chapter or pursuant to the
provisions of subdivision (c) of Section 56.10 may not further
disclose that medical information except in accordance with a new
authorization that meets the requirements of Section 56.11, or as
specifically required or permitted by other provisions of this
chapter or by law.
The school was a recipient of medical information and it cannot disclose that information without a written authorization from the parents.
While the statute may not technically apply, the school could still be sued for invasion of privacy for disclosing a student's medical condition or diagnosis, see generally
I don't see why the school cannot just black out the sentence that mentions the student's diagnosis.
I hope this information is helpful.