The California Public Records Act (CPRA) was originally enacted in 1968 and requires that governmental records be made accessible to the public upon request, unless otherwise exempted by law. Pursuant to the CPRA, the public can inspect or receive a copy of any record unless the record is exempted from disclosure under the act.
Who can initiate a public records request?
Anyone may initiate a request for public records.
What type of information can I request?
Responsive records to a public record request from the San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE) may include a wide variety of documents and other materials that were created or obtained by SDCOE and are, at the time the request is filed, in SDCOE's possession and control and not expressively exempt from disclosure. The CPRA does not require a public agency to create a record that it is not in possession of at the time of the request. Furthermore, a public records request is different than a question or series of questions posed to SDCOE. Therefore, the CPRA does not require SDCOE to answer written or oral questions submitted by members of the public.
What type of records are exempt from disclosure?
Exemptions for certain records found in the CPRA or other state and federal laws permit or require a public agency to withhold such records. Exemptions from disclosure contained in the CPRA or other laws are intended to serve two key purposes: to protect privacy rights and to provide a public agency with the ability to perform its assigned duties and functions in a reasonably efficient and effective manner. Although the CPRA alone has over 70 exemptions, provided below are a few general examples of records that may be considered exempt from disclosure:
- Attorney-client privileged communication
- Student records
- Preliminary drafts
- Personnel and/or medical records
- Personal information (i.e., home address, phone number, email address, etc.)
How do I make a public records request?
To submit a public records request to SDCOE, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
- Specific details of the exact record(s) you are requesting to inspect or receive a copy of; and
- If applicable, the timeframe related to the record(s) you are requesting (Ex., 2019 LCAP, FY20 disclosure letters, etc.)
How soon must SDCOE respond to my request?
The CPRA requires a public agency to provide a response to the requester within 10 calendar days (the CPRA allows for this initial response to be extended up to an additional 14 calendar days in certain circumstances) to acknowledge receipt of the request and inform the requester if any responsive records are in the possession of the public agency. However, this does not mean that a public agency is required to provide responsive records within 10 calendar days, but rather provide the requester with an estimated date and time when the records will be made available if the agency is not able to provide the responsive records within this 10-day period.
How much will I be charged for my request?
Documents and materials within the possession of SDCOE that are available in electronic format will be provided without charge, when feasible. Fees for paper copies are 10 cents per page, including any applicable sales tax, unless the requested document has an established statutory fee. In general, SDCOE will comply with state and federal laws and established SDCOE board policies or administrative regulations when assessing fees or costs associated with a public record request.