The board of education adopts this policy in connection with the Oklahoma Open Records Act (the "Act").
The technology center, as a tax supported institution, recognizes that the public has a right to be fully informed concerning its operations. The board strongly believes that informed citizens are vital to the successful functioning of the democratic government process which this technology center desires to exemplify to its students.
In order to achieve these goals, the board of education hereby states that all records of the technology center, except those records designated as confidential in this policy, or, otherwise, as required by federal or state law, shall be open to any person for inspection, copying and/or mechanical reproduction during regular business hours. All persons requesting the right to inspect non-confidential records of the technology center shall be accorded prompt access to those records.
Confidential Records Not Available for Inspection
As permitted by the Act, the technology center hereby designates the following records as confidential and not open for public inspection:
1. Records which can be kept confidential under federal or state law.
2. Personnel records which relate to internal personnel investigations including examination and selection material for employment, hiring, appointment, promotion, demotion, discipline or resignation.
3. Personnel records where disclosure would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy such as employee evaluations, payroll deductions, and employment applications submitted by persons not hired, and transcripts from institutions of higher education.
4. Bid specifications for competitive bidding prior to publication; contents of sealed bids prior to bid opening; computer programs or software (but not the data thereon); and appraisals relating to the sale or acquisition of real estate prior to the award of a contract – if disclosure would give an unfair advantage to competitors or bidders.
5. Personal communications received from a person exercising rights secured by the Oklahoma or United States Constitution, except for the fact that a communication has been received and that it is or is not a complaint. Any response to such personal communications shall be confidential only to the extent necessary to protect the identity of the person exercising the right.
6. Individual student records, except for: (a) statistical information not identified with a particular student if such information is maintained in a composite form and (b) directory information as defined in the Act, if, pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act that information (i) has been designated by the school district as directory information and (ii) parents have been notified of and have not exercised their non-release rights.
7. Instructor lesson plans, tests and other teaching materials.
8. Personal communications concerning individual students.
9. Personal notes and personally created materials, when made prior to taking action, making a recommendation or issuing a report. Confidentiality does not extend to departmental budget requests prepared as an aid to memory or research leading to the adoption of a public policy or the implementation of a public project.
10. The home address of any person employed or formerly employed by the technology center.
11. The home telephone number of any person employed or formerly employed by the technology center, where disclosure would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.
The board of education hereby designates its superintendent or if such person is not available during regular business hours, then its deputy superintendent as the person authorized to release non-confidential public records for inspection, copying or mechanical reproduction.
Under Oklahoma law, the board clerk is the custodian of the technology center’s copy of required school board election related filings. Copies of these documents can be obtained by making a request through the clerk’s designee, the professional assistant.
Fees for Records and for Search for Records
The following fees shall be charged for records reproduction and any compensable search for records:
8 ½” x 11” $.25 per copy
8 ½” x 14” $.25 per copy
11” x 17” $.50 per copy
Document conversion (TIFF or PDF) $.25 per page
In addition to the costs noted above, when a request for public records would clearly cause excessive disruption of the school’s essential functions or is solely for commercial purpose the district will charge a reasonable search fee equaling the actual hourly cost to the district. This cost includes the base salary, benefits, taxes, burdens, and retirement contributions paid by the district for the employee(s) involved in the search. The requestor will be charged this hourly rate for all search time, review time, and, if necessary, time spent redacting records prior to production.
The technology center does not consider publication in a newspaper or broadcast by news media as resale or use of data for trade or commercial purpose. However, the technology center shall charge the news media and others the direct cost of copying electronic data.
A search fee shall not be charged when the release of documents is in the public interest, including, but not limited to, release to the news media, scholars, authors and taxpayers seeking to determine whether those entrusted with the affairs of the government are honestly, faithfully, and competently performing their duties as public servants.
Costs associated with reproduction of public records shall be paid by, or on behalf of the requestor, at the time documents requested are to be picked up. In the event of a large records request or a request that involves an outside cost to the technology center, the school may request a deposit, to be set by the records custodian, to be made at the time of the request.
Request for Records
Requests for public records shall be made to the attention of the superintendent or the records custodian. The request shall identify with specificity the record or records sought. Where the request for records is unclear or confusing, the records custodian may request that the requestor provide a more precise explanation or description of the records requested. The technology center shall produce records requested promptly, taking into consideration the accessibility of the record, the number and type of records requested, and the press of school business.
An individual requesting public records, pursuant to the Act, is requested to use the technology center’s request form to expedite the processing of the request.
Appeal of Denial of Records
If inspection of documents designated as confidential is denied, the person requesting access to such documents shall have a right to appeal the denial to the superintendent.
Adopted: December 18, 2014