This week is Sunshine Week, which is a national initiative to educate the public about the importance of open government.
Records retention is the process school districts use to manage the records that are created and flow through a school district.
Earlier today, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine released an updated version of Ohio Sunshine Laws: An Open Government Resource Manual, which is commonly referred to as the “Yellow Book.” The manual includes information about Ohio’s Public Records Act and Open Meetings Act (collectively referred to as the Sunshine Laws) and includes recent updates.
Two state agencies have recently prepared new resources for school districts: The Ohio Department of Education (ODE) updated its truancy and attendance guidance, and the Ohio History Connection (OHC) added resources for properly managing local government records.
Truancy and discipline resources
On Thursday, the Ohio Supreme Court issued a ruling in State ex rel. School Choice Ohio, Inc. v. Cincinnati Pub. School Dist. [Cincinnati Public School District was dismissed as a respondent in this case when it entered into a settlement agreement with SCO.]
In October 2013, School Choice Ohio (SCO) submitted a public records request to Springfield City School District, requesting:
The maintenance, destruction and preservation of public records is an important and technical process. Under Ohio law, public records must be kept and maintained so that the public may access those records. Records must be retained for certain periods of time, sometimes permanently, depending upon the type of record.
State lawmakers have finalized an expedited process to hear complaints from citizens alleging they were wrongfully denied access to public records. The bill, Senate Bill (SB) 321, received unanimous votes in the Ohio House and Senate and is awaiting signature by the Governor.
This morning, the Ohio Supreme Court heard arguments in School Choice Ohio Inc. v. Cincinnati Public School District and Springfield City School District. School Choice Ohio (SCO) filed the lawsuit after the Springfield City School District denied SCO’s request for student names and addresses.