Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

From the U.S. Department of Education

  • What is FOIA - The federal FOIA does not provide access to records held by state or local government agencies, or by private businesses or individuals. Most states, and some local jurisdictions have their own laws about access to state and local records. State Education agencies should be contacted for further information about these statutes.
  • Making a Request - Under certain circumstances you may be entitled to receive more information under the Privacy Act of 1974 than under the FOIA. Privacy Act requests can be made only by U.S. citizens or aliens lawfully admitted for permanent U.S. residence who are seeking information about themselves in a system of records maintained under their names or other personal identifiers.
  • E-FOIA Reading Room - The U.S. Department of Education (ED) makes certain types of records, created by the agency on or after November 1, 1996, available electronically on the Internet. The e-Reading Room consists of: Frequently requested information; Decisions rendered in the adjudication of administrative cases; Final statements of policy; Annual FOIA reports to Congress; Other documents, including ED's Records Disposition Schedule...
  • FOIA Frequently Asked Questions - Where do I send my requests/letters?  Who is the contact person for FOIA matters?  How quickly do you respond to requests?...
  • Fees - Upon receipt, your request is reviewed to determine how fees will be assessed. Fees are determined based on the type of requester you are (commercial, educational/scientific, and all others). Requesters from educational/scientific and commercial institutions must pay for search and review time and reproduction costs. All other requestors pay reproduction costs only with the first 100 pages free.
  • Links to other websites on FOIA - From
  • Full Test of FOIA from the Department of Justice - Full text of the Freedom of Information Act in a form showing all amendments to the statute made by the "Electronic Freedom of Information Act Amendments of 1996." All newly enacted provisions are in boldface type.