Statement from David L. Warren Regarding the RADD Report on Student Unit Record Data

March 11, 2014

Support for student privacy is a policy position that the NAICU membership has taken throughout our existence, encompassing support of the Family Educational Rights and Responsibility Act (FERPA)—as well as opposition to the collection of student unit record data. Protection of student privacy was one of the six principles that guided our policy development on the Higher Education Act reauthorization work that began in 2002. So, it is certainly true that the NAICU membership supported a ban on the establishment of a student unit record data system and continues to do so.

Whatever the speculation about our motives may be, the truth is that our opposition is—and consistently has been—grounded in the concern about the adverse impact such a system would have on student privacy. We do not believe that the price for enrolling in college should be permanent entry into a massive data registry. Such a registry would collect individual data about students throughout their lifetimes, with no serious discussion about what data should not be collected or what privacy safeguards would remain.

Many members of Congress also care deeply about student privacy, and the ban on a federal student unit record system stems from that concern.

David L. Warren
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities 

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