The U.S. Department of Education’s Student Privacy Policy Office (SPPO) is responsible for the administration and enforcement of federal laws relating to the privacy of students’ education records, and for the provision of technical assistance on student privacy issues for the broader education community. For more information about the office's other functions, please visit SPPO's page on ED.gov.  Among other things, SPPO is responsible for:

  • Enforcing the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA). SPPO’s enforcement role includes investigating complaints from parents and eligible students and other alleged violations of FERPA and PPRA, providing intermediation assistance to complainants, and providing technical assistance to parents and students who feel their rights under FERPA or PPRA may have been violated.
  • Developing regulations, guidance, and best practices on student privacy issues, and providing general and targeted technical assistance to educational agencies and institutions and the broader education community on issues related to student privacy.

SPPO’s Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) was established in 2010 as a one-stop resource for education stakeholders to learn about privacy, confidentiality, and security practices related to student-level data systems and other uses of student data.  Among other things, PTAC:

  • operates a Student Privacy Help Desk, offering assistance on student privacy issues to the education community via phone or email;
  • develops privacy and security training materials for States, districts, schools, and postsecondary institutions;
  • conducts technical assistance webinars and site visits to State educational agencies and local educational agencies; and
  • hosts privacy-focused regional meetings and forums for education stakeholders.


Kevin Herms​

Kevin HermsKevin Herms is the Chief Privacy Officer, the Senior Agency Official for Privacy, and the Director of the Student Privacy Policy Office (SPPO) at the U.S. Department of Education (Department). Kevin leads the Department’s privacy program and the SPPO’s administration of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment. Prior to joining the Department, Kevin served as Deputy Branch Chief of the Privacy Branch at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). During his 11 years at OMB, Kevin was responsible for developing Federal privacy policy, overseeing implementation of privacy law and policy by Federal agencies, and providing assistance to Federal agencies on privacy matters. Kevin has a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School, an M.P.P. from the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan, and a B.A. in philosophy, politics, and economics from Pomona College.

Frank Miller

Frank MillerFrank Miller is the Deputy Director of the Student Privacy Policy Office (SPPO), focusing on the administration of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and the Protections of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA). Prior to joining SPPO in 2013, he was an education program specialist in the Office of Special Education Programs. Before beginning his federal career in 2011, Frank had several years of State-level experience, including 6 years as Division Chief in the Pennsylvania Office of Child Development and Early Learning where he had fiscal, operations and monitoring, and data management responsibilities for the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C and Part B/619 programming; and 9 years in regulatory administration and program compliance with the PA Department of Health. In addition to federal and state level experience, he also worked at the local level as a children and youth caseworker and program manager of community living arrangements for individuals with disabilities. Frank has a B.S. degree in health policy and administration from the Pennsylvania State University and a M.S. degree in computer information systems from the University of Phoenix. 

Ross Lemke (Contractor)

Ross LemkeRoss Lemke serves as the manager for the Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) with over 10 years of experience providing TA around education data.  He helps state and local education agencies, schools, districts and postsecondary institutions develop an understanding of FERPA, privacy and data security. He provides timely support through the PTAC helpdesk, on-site technical assistance visits and development of technical guidance documents and live webinars. Prior to his work with PTAC Ross has provided TA around numerous U.S. Department of Education data collections including EDFacts, Civil Rights Data Collection and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).