Four fraternity members at the University of Alabama were criminally charged after being accused of beating another student in the courtyard of a dormitory. And while university officials confirmed the identities of the accused students, they declined to release their fraternity affiliation.
According to court records obtained by the Tuscaloosa News, one of the suspects punched and knocked the victim to the ground. Another suspect jumped on and punched the victim and another student pulled him to the ground, punched and kicked him.
The four accused students, who have all denied guilt in the attack, are members of a campus fraternity. The university is claiming that the name of the fraternity is protected under FERPA.
Source: Tuscaloosa News, 4 University of Alabama fraternity brothers charged with assault (9/11/2014)
SPLC Executive Director Frank LoMonte: It’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon, by the way. Just so’s not to bury the lede.
We know that because Sig Ep said so. Not because this TOP SECRET piece of CONFIDENTIAL information was shared by the crackerjack security team at the University of Alabama.
I mean, come on, it’s not like fraternities on the University of Alabama campus hang out huge banners publicly identifying themselves.
And come on, it’s not like the University posts photographs on official UA websites of dozens of identifiable people running around campus brazenly wearing their confidential Greek affiliation on their clothing!
And it’s not like the University of Alabama’s official FERPA directory information policy explicitly includes as non-confidential information that can lawfully be released to the public:
- Participation or membership in officially recognized activities, social or greek organizations, and sports (or in intercollegiate athletic teams)
Because if those things were true, why, the University of Alabama’s media-relations office would not just be lying about FERPA, but lying in an insultingly, transparently stupid way.
So whew, it’s a good thing those things aren’t true.
We rate this: not protected by FERPA at all