Confidentiality & Privacy
Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) staff adheres to the ethical standards of their respective professions and to state and federal laws relating to confidentiality. We are happy to talk with you about our services without revealing confidential client information. CAPS can not legally disclose information about an adult student age 18 or older unless the student signs a consent form allowing us to release information to you.
There have been occasions when parents have been given incorrect information by students about CAPS services and appointment availability. Unless your student gives us written permission, we cannot acknowledge whether your student has been seen at CAPS or is making progress in counseling. The only exceptions are in some situations when a student is under 18 years of age, when we are concerned that a student is clearly and imminently suicidal, when we learn of ongoing child abuse, or when we are ordered to release confidential information by a court of law.
Many students prefer to keep their counseling completely private, and such privacy is typically vital for successful counseling. However, assuming your student is willing to have one of CAPS' counselors talk to you about the student's participation in counseling, one good way to arrange for this is by asking your student to have the counselor call you during a session. The counselor will then have your student complete and sign the necessary release form. In general, counseling works best if everything parents have to share with their student’s counselor is also shared with their student.
Even if your student doesn’t give their counselor permission to provide information to you, you may choose to contact a counselor to share your concerns. Such contact may make sense in various situations, such as when you are concerned that your student is in serious danger. Note, however, that as stated earlier, the counselor will not be able to acknowledge whether they have met with your student unless the student has given explicit permission to do so. Also, if you contact CAPS to provide us with information about a student who is a CAPS client, the student's counselor will want to discuss the information you provide with your student.