Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Getting Religious Preference Lists From State Universities"

It has long been a discussion between BCM College Ministers and school administrators about releasing religious preference lists of incoming freshmen.

The Baptist Collegiate Ministry at LSU receives the list of incoming Baptist students as a result of an attorney's opinion to the University telling them that "the statement
on the admissions form allow the release of the data to the
religious organizations."

The opinion reads like this, "The statement on the admissions form, when received back from the student, constitutes a signed and dated consent to the release of the religious preference information. If FERPA does not apply (because the student has not yet enrolled)the consent information nevertheless acts as a waiver of any potential, constitutionally-based privacy right to the religious preference information."

In other words, LSU has been told they can release the religious preference information because the student filling it out constitutes their giving permission to share it. As a result of the LSU decision, other major universities have released religious preference information. After seeing the LSU opinion, the University of Florida changed their policy.

Check with your office of Student Affairs. For detailed information, talk with Steve Masters at LSU Baptist Collegiate Ministry.

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