Final tally for Portland schools over public records disputes? Nearly $280,000

Portland Public Schools will pay an additional $105,000 to cover legal fees in a dispute that began when the district refused to release the names of staffers it had put on paid leave, the school board decided Tuesday. That puts the total bill for the district-initiated lawsuit at just over $277,000, which is 38 percent higher…


Broward Co. (FL) school board filed for contempt against Sun Sentinel — and then learned about it in Sun Sentinel

No one told some Broward school board members they were filing a contempt-of-court case against the South Florida Sun Sentinel. No one except the Sun Sentinel, that is. The district’s chief lawyer, Barbara Myrick, asked a judge this week to hold the newspaper and two reporters in contempt of court for publishing an uncensored report…


Evanston (IL) High School board slams door on public access to communications

A confidentiality rule approved by the board of Evanston Township High School District 202 (ETHS) on Dec. 11 unlawfully reverses the presumption of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), according to an attorney on the board who voted against it. “The presumption under FOIA is that all government communication is public with some narrow areas…


Georgia passes new open records law impacting public school athletics

A bill allowing public school athletic departments in Georgia to have increased time to respond to open records requests was signed into law by governor Nathan Deal on Monday.

The law, which impacts the University of Georgia, provides up to 90 business days to respond to open records requests, as opposed to the three business days that were previously granted. The reported reason for the amendment concerns requests for recruiting information.​


Georgia schools may be forced into more transparency

Georgia school officials may be working with less state control, but lawmakers want them to work more openly, as well.

Two proposals that cleared the state House of Representatives this week would require school administrators to publicly post information about curriculum and finances. Rep. Dave Belton, R-Buckhead, sponsored a measure that requires districts to “make readily accessible” school-level details and documents that are already public information.


Getting school transparency using Colorado law

One of the many questions parents have as part of the controversial school curriculum debate in the Jefferson County School District concerns their legal rights to information from the school board.

If you are in the Jefferson County or have questions about your district there is help finding out your rights to know what is going on in your school district. The Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition is holding a free informational seminar on Monday, September 29 starting at 7 p.m. about the public's right to know information and its access to open meetings.


Open Government Group Demands Public Records Regarding Albuquerque Schools Chief Investigation

The New Mexico Foundation for Open Government, FOG, today filed an Inspection of Public Records Act request asking for the investigation report prepared for the Albuquerque Public School Board about former Superintendent Winston Brooks. Last Friday, Brooks and APS entered into a settlement agreement in which Brooks resigned in return for a $350,000 payment by APS.


Our view: An information upgrade

Radford schools are promising that future audio files of board meetings will end up much less expensive than the $40-an-hour rate quoted initially to an interested resident.

That was the rate before then-school board candidate Mark Schafer contacted columnist Dan Casey. Casey’s April 10 column (“Radford school board recordings out of reach”) exposed a school system not quite up-to-date in its use of technology, and ignorant or indifferent to certain provisions of the state’s Freedom of Information Act.