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Reports from Policy Analysts

State Senate Seeks to Shield Security Information from FOIA

Submitted On: Thursday, February 9, 2017

Analyst: Welch, Grover

The Arkansas Senate Education Committee passed legislation that would exempt certain school records from the Freedom of Information Act.
Arkansas Senator Gary Stubblefield offered a bill ( SB12) that would protect records of security incidents, emergency planning, and those that are 'reasonably be expected to be detrimental to the public safety', under the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act. 

Under the senator's proposal, parents worry that access to information pertaining to their school district's personnel assignments and mechanisms would be shielded. Some parents believe this would result in less secure environments by releasing the districts of accountability.

Included would be school safety plans, procedures and risk assessments among others.
Dr. Richard Abernathy of the Arkansas Association of Educational Administrators spoke in favor of the bill, noting that parents usually are asked to participate in the planning of school safety plans and measures.

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