Ohio school board wants open records training

The Columbus, Ohio school board grappled recently with whether to require board members to receive open records training.

One school board member wanted specific training about whether e-mail is an open record. Readers of this blog know that she was wise to want training in that area.

Ohio is one of the states that doesn’t set a statutory time limit within which a government agency must respond to a request, requiring only that the response be “prompt”.

The school board members in Columbus wanted some guidance in how to interpret “prompt” or “reasonable amount of time”. Court cases in Ohio have found that delays of six days and twenty four days are not prompt.

Is there a local government agency that provides training to its staff and elected officials on, pragmatically speaking, how to keep records, including email records, so that copies of those records can be produced quickly and inexpensively? I haven’t seen a policy or training manual like that.

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