Red box with green PII

Double-Check Federal Privacy Requirements before You Link

As you plan to link data, be sure you check federal privacy requirements for sharing personally identifiable information (PII). One very helpful resource to consider is Understanding the Confidentiality Requirements Applicable to IDEA Early Childhood Programs Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS). This document was issued in October 2016 by the U.S. Department of Education. It provides responses to frequently asked questions to facilitate and enhance the implementation of IDEA privacy and confidentiality provisions. It can serve as an official response to many questions about the confidentiality provisions under Part C and Part B of IDEA and FERPA.

This 15 page document contains 17 questions and answers organized into four topical areas:

  • General IDEA and FERPA Privacy and Confidentiality Provisions,
  • Parental Consent Requirements and Exceptions, ,/li>
  • Notification to Parents, and
  • Duty to Maintain and Provision for Destruction of Records.

Questions #9-11 are of particular interest to “Linking Week” as these outline requirements related to parental consent under IDEA and FERPA as well as exceptions under FERPA for getting parental consent before sharing PII data. A number of exceptions are discussed including under audit and evaluation, school officials with legitimate educational interest and under the Uninterrupted Scholars Act (USA).

Still want more? Listen to a recording of the DaSy and the U.S. Department of Education webinar from December 15, 2016 that accompanied the release of this resource. The webinar Privacy, please! Safeguarding the privacy of young children with disabilities under IDEA & FERPA was designed as a discussion of answers to frequently asked questions related to privacy and confidentiality for IDEA early childhood programs. The recording can be found here.

Have additional questions for clarification? Contact DaSy at for technical assistance.