News in Brief
Michigan Court Rules E-Mails Not Public
E-mail messages from teachers’-union leaders don’t become public records just because they’re contained in a school district’s computer system, the Michigan Court of Appeals has ruled.
The court last week overturned a trial judge’s decision in a 2007 case involving the Howell, Mich., schools. A Livingston County circuit judge had ruled the e-mails fell under the Freedom of Information Act.
The case began when the Howell schools received a series of requests for the release of e-mail messages from three officials of the Howell Education Association. The district and the union agreed on a “friendly” suit to establish whether the e-mail traffic was subject to disclosure because it was recorded in the district’s computer system.
In the decision, the three appeals judges said the case presented a “difficult question requiring that we apply a statute, whose purpose is to render government transparent, to a technology that did not exist in reality (or even in many people’s imaginations) at the time.”
Vol. 29, Issue 20, Page 4
Get more stories and free e-newsletters!
- Chief Information Officer and Special Projects Manager
- Randolph Public Schools, MA
- Dean of Students
- Diman Regional Vocational-Technical High School, Fall River, MA
- Executive Director
- Aspen Academy, Savage, MN
- Glenbrook North High School, Glenview, IL
- Modern & Classical Languages Department Chair
- New Trier Township High School District 203, Winnetka, IL