FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION

R.E. Banker, Jr.,

 
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2007-094

Board of Education,

Salem Public Schools,

 
  Respondent July 25, 2007
       

 

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on June 18, 2007, at which time the complainant and the respondent appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint. 

           

After consideration of the entire record, the following facts are found and conclusions of law are reached:

 

1.      The respondent is a public agency within the meaning of 1-200(1), G.S.

 

2.  It is found that, by letter dated January 8, 2007, the complainant requested a copy of the following, from the respondent:

 

a.       “approved Salem 8th grade Math Placement Criteria;” and

 

b.      “2006 Math Placement Data for the current 8th grade algebra class, including all criteria used.  Redacted to remove names and re-sorted, grouped by name is acceptable.”

 

3.  By letter dated January 12, 2007, the respondent provided the complainant with a copy of a document entitled “Grade 8 Algebra I Prerequisites”.  However, in the January 12, 2007 letter, the respondent also stated “we are unable to comply with your second request” because to do so would “lead to the disclosure of personally identifiable information concerning students” which is “protected from disclosure due to Federal law…”

 

            4.  By letter dated February 5, 2007 and filed February 9, 2007, the complainant appealed to the Commission, alleging that the respondent violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act by denying him a copy of the record described in paragraph 2.b, above. 

 

5.  It is found that the respondent interpreted the request described in paragraph 2.b, above, as a request for copies of the report cards, reports containing and interpreting scores on the Connecticut Mastery Test (CMT), and other similar test scores, for each of the 23 students currently in the 8th grade algebra class.

 

6.  However, at the hearing in this matter, the complainant stated that the records described in paragraph 5, above, were not the records he was seeking.  Rather, at the hearing, the complainant testified that he was seeking a record, in spreadsheet form, containing the names of the students in each row, and the criteria for eligibility for the algebra class listed across the columns.  Such record, as envisioned by the complainant, would demonstrate which criteria were met by each student currently in the class.  The complainant stated that it would be acceptable for the names of the students to be redacted and “resorted” to protect their identities.

 

            7.  It is found that the request described in paragraph 2.b, above, does not encompass the record described in paragraph 6, above.  Moreover, it is found that the respondent does not maintain the record described in paragraph 6, above.   

 

8.  It is therefore concluded that the respondent did not violate the FOI Act as alleged in the complaint.

 

The following order by the Commission is hereby recommended on the basis of the record concerning the above-captioned complaint:

1.  The complaint is hereby dismissed. 

 

Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of July 25, 2007.

 

________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PURSUANT TO SECTION 4-180(c), G.S., THE FOLLOWING ARE THE NAMES OF EACH PARTY AND THE MOST RECENT MAILING ADDRESS, PROVIDED TO THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION, OF THE PARTIES OR THEIR AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE.

 

THE PARTIES TO THIS CONTESTED CASE ARE:

 

R.E. Banker, Jr.

119 Beckwith Hill Drive

Salem, CT 06420

 

Board of Education,

Salem Public Schools

c/o William R. Connon, Esq.

Sullivan, Schoen, Campane & Connon

646 Prospect Avenue

Hartford, CT 06105

 

 

 

 

___________________________________

Petrea A. Jones

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

FIC/2007-094FD/paj/7/30/2007