Q: Are student government election results at a public high school public records? My school only announces who won and does not provide the actual vote tally. A: The answer will probably depend on the wording of your state’s open records law. In the only case we are aware of to date, the Virginia State Supreme Court declined to… Continue reading Are student government election results at a public high school public records?
Ginny Bixby: Access to public records can be the key to great journalism, especially at a public university. By examining public records, student journalists gain information about a school’s operations and hold school officials accountable for their actions. For student journalists at Florida State University in Tallahassee, covering the athletics department is about to become… Continue reading PODCAST: What the privatization of Florida State University’s athletics department will mean for journalists
Q: What information does the Clery Act give me access to? A: Any college or university that accepts federal funding is required to notify the campus community when certain crimes are reported. Every school must keep an annual statistical report, a daily crime log, and make "timely reports" to the community when certain crimes are reported that… Continue reading Ask SPLC: What information does the Clery Act give me access to?
A bill that would force campus police to comply with Utah public records law was approved by the state House of Representatives Tuesday. The Senate approved the bill earlier this month, and the measure now goes to Gov. Gary Herbert to sign. The law would expand the definition of a law enforcement agency to cover… Continue reading Utah bill that would subject BYU police department to public records law sent to governor’s desk
On Feb. 19, House Bill 1 passed the Virginia Senate with a 38-2 vote. The bill will now go back to the House for approval of changes made by the Senate.
A recent opinion by the Virginia Supreme Court illustrates just how closely requests for teacher-specific information can be scrutinized, and drives home the importance of carefully considering an open-records request before making it.
A library of state-by-state reference materials created with the help of SPLC attorney volunteers can help simplify the task of understanding and enforcing open-records laws, a frequent source of tension between journalists and educational institutions.
The University of Mississippi is withholding portions of now-departed head football coach Hugh Freeze's cellphone records on the grounds that the redacted calls are "personal." But there is no blanket exemption for "personal information" in the state's Public Records Act.
Offering early-retirement buyout packages to high-paid senior employees is an increasingly common way for cash-strapped colleges to cut costs. But students trying to cover those buyouts have met with stiff (and legally questionable) resistance to disclosure of who qualifies for the payouts.
The Illinois Supreme Court upheld lower courts’ rulings that a non-profit school athletic organization is not subject to Freedom of Information Act requests.