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Required Annual Notifications

Child Abuse Hotline Notification

On Jan. 10, 2017, the Board of Regents adopted a regulation requiring school districts in New York to post the child abuse hotline number in highly visible areas of their school buildings and on district or school websites.

If you suspect a child is being abused or maltreated (neglected), report it by calling 1-800-342-3720, a toll-free 24-hour hotline operated by the New York State Office of Children and Family Services. If you believe a child is in immediate danger, call 911 or your local police department. Information about reporting child abuse and maltreatment (neglect) is available online at http://ocfs.ny.gov/main/cps/.

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

HFM BOCES PARENTS: The federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) allows schools to disclose, without parental consent, certain “directory information” such as a student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, participation in athletics, honors and awards, photograph and dates of attendance, unless parents have advised the district to the contrary.

The primary purpose of directory information is to allow HFM BOCES to include this type of information in school publications (district publications and the district website, social media outlets including HFM BOCES Facebook) and for publicity of student accomplishments or specific educational programs to the electronic (television) and print (newspaper) media.

In practice, HFM BOCES has historically released a student’s name, grade, honor, awards and photographs in publications and to the media. Other directory information is not routinely released. A similar procedure regarding the release of information on the BOCES website is in place.

Note: HFM BOCES has an “opt-out” policy in regards to release of student information

Parents not wishing information about their child to be used in BOCES publications, releases to the media or on the BOCES web site or social media should write a letter to the principal/director of their child’s HFM BOCES program. The signed and dated letter should state that directory information about (name of student) should not be released under FERPA. You do not have to give a reason. This letter must be sent annually by September 30.

You may download an “opt-out” form here: HFM Photo Opt Out Form


Parents’ Bill of Rights

Effective July 31, 2014, an amendment to Education Law, section 20-D, requires school districts and BOCES to publish on their websites, a parents bill of rights for data privacy and security and to include such information with every contract a school district enters into with a third party contractor where the third party contractor receives student data or teacher or principal data.

• State and federal laws protect the confidentiality of personally identifiable information, and safeguards associated with industry standards and best practices, including encryption, firewalls and password protection, must be in place when data is stored or transferred.

• A student’s personally identifiable information cannot be sold or released for any commercial purposes.

• Parents shall have the right to inspect and review the complete contents of their child’s education record.

• A complete list of all student data elements collected by the State is available for public review at NYSED or by writing to the Chief Privacy Officer at NYSED.

• Parents have the right to have complaints about possible breaches of student data addressed. Complaints should be directed to the District Superintendent of HFM BOCES.

• This bill of rights is subject to change based on regulations of the commissioner of education and the NYSED chief privacy officer.


Student Records Information

In accordance with federal and state laws and regulations regarding the maintenance of student records, the HFM BOCES Board of Education recognizes the legal requirement to protect the confidentiality of student records. The District Superintendent shall ensure that the procedures for the confidentiality of student records shall be consistent with federal and state law pursuant to the authority of the Commissioner of Education. It is the intent of HFM BOCES to limit the disclosure of information contained in a student’s education records except by prior consent of the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) or the eligible student, unless otherwise provided by law.

Parent(s) or guardian(s) and eligible students have the following rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA):

• The right to inspect and review the student’s record
• The right to be provided, on request, with a copy of all or part of the student’s education record
• The right to exercise a limited control over other people’s access to the student’s education record
• The right to designate a representative who will inspect, review, or copy such records
• The right to request and receive from the district a reasonable explanation of information contained in the education record of the student
• The right to seek to correct the student’s education record, at a hearing if necessary
• The right to report violations of FERPA to the Department of Education
• The right to be informed about FERPA rights

All rights and protections held by a student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) under FERPA shall vest with the student when he or she reaches the age of 18, or enrolls in a post-secondary school. For purposes of federal law, the student shall then become an “eligible student.” Additionally, on application of the parent(s) or guardian(s), a school record shall be issued promptly to a minor who presents a certificate of physical fitness and meets the specified age requirement.


Building Use Requests

BOCES facilities may be used by district residents with approval of the Board of Education. Fees are charged for certain kinds of activities and/or for extra services, which BOCES may have to provide. If you wish to use school facilities, contact the district superintendent’s office. Insurance coverage is required.


Annual Go Home Early Drill

Each November, HFM BOCES sends its students home 15 minutes early to test its Emergency Management Plan. The “Go Home Early Drill” is required once a year by the New York State Education Department. The drill date is published each year in the BOCES calendar. The purpose of the early dismissal drill is to test the effectiveness of the transportation and communications systems in the event of an emergency. Copies of the Emergency Management Plan are located in the Operations office of HFM BOCES, 2755 State Highway 67, Johnstown, NY 12095.


Annual AHERA Notice

As required by the Federal Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA), This notice informs that the documentation for the HFM District Asbestos Management Plan, the semiannual surveillance inspections, and the three-year reinspection are available for review in the HFM BOCES Operations Office. Information regarding response actions may also be found in the District Asbestos Management Plan.


Annual Pest Control Advisory Notification

New York State Education Law Section 409-H, effective July 1, 2001, requires all public and nonpublic elementary and secondary schools to provide written notification to all persons in parental relation, faculty, and staff regarding the potential use of pesticides periodically throughout the school year.

HFM BOCES is required to maintain a list of persons in parental relation, faculty, and staff who wish to receive 48-hour prior written notification of certain pesticide applications. The following pesticide applications are not subject to prior notification requirements:

• a school remains unoccupied for a continuous 72-hours following an application;
• anti-microbial products;
• nonvolatile rodenticides in tamper resistant bait stations in areas inaccessible to children;
• nonvolatile insecticidal baits in tamper resistant bait stations in areas inaccessible to children;
• silica gels and other nonvolatile ready-to-use pastes, foams, or gels in areas inaccessible to children;
• boric acid and disodium octaborate tetrahydrate;
• the application of EPA designated biopesticides;
• the application of EPA designated exempt materials under 40CFR152.25;
• the use of aerosol products with a directed spray in containers of 18 fluid ounces or less when used to protect individuals from an imminent threat from stinging and biting insects including venomous spiders, bees, wasps, and hornets.

In the event an emergency application is necessary to protect against an imminent threat to human health, a good faith effort will be made to supply written notification to those on the 48-hour prior notification list.

If you would like to receive 48-hour prior notification of pesticide applications that are scheduled to occur in your school, please make your request in writing to Jessica Kirby-Barnes, the HFM BOCES pesticide representative at: 2755 State Highway 67, Johnstown, NY 12095  Phone: (518) 736-4380, Fax: (518) 736-4381  Email: jbarnes@hfmboces.org

Please feel free to contact the representative above for further information on these requirements.