Public Records Requests
Please Note: High school transcripts are NOT considered public records. If you are requesting a copy of a high school transcript or other student record, contact the district’s Central Records office at (727) 793-2701.
All public records of the School Board of Pinellas County made or received in connection with the official business of the Board and the School District will be made available upon request of any person for inspection, examination, and copying in accordance with applicable law and the following guidelines:
The District will not create records in order to respond to a request, but will provide existing records, in whatever form those records exist.
Depending on the nature of the request, a service charge will be imposed if identifying, locating, compiling, reviewing, and redacting personal student information takes more than 15 minutes to complete. This service charge will be computed to the nearest quarter hour exceeding 15 minutes based on the current rate of pay of the district employee(s) and/or supervisors who perform these services. Estimates will be provided before any work is undertaken.
Individuals are encouraged, but not required, to submit requests in writing identifying the specific records they desire to inspect or copy.
Representatives of the media should submit requests to:
Lisa Wolf-Chason, Public Information Officer, Office of Strategic Communications
301 Fourth St. SW, Largo, FL 33770
Members of the public should submit requests to:
Kerry Michelotti, Legal Secretary, School Board Attorney’s Office
301 Fourth St. SW, Largo, FL 33770
Individuals are not required to provide a reason for requested public records, nor do they need to identify themselves (although it’s helpful they do so in order to satisfy the request) or the organization they represent.
Public records are satisfied in the order in which they are received. They are fulfilled, according to statute, in a timely manner. Bear in mind that the district can have dozens of public records pending at any time. No automatic waiting period is imposed in the satisfaction of a public records request; the only delay is that which is reasonably necessary to allow the district to compile the requested records
and protect against disclosure of those records or portions of records that are confidential and exempt. Requests may also be delayed by reason of the individual’s failure to pay any required deposit or other cost.
Difference between a public records request and an information request:
A request for information, as distinguished from a public records request, is one in which the requested information does not already exist in public record form. For example, a person may request staff to create a document that does not already exist (such as by compiling into one document information contained in multiple documents) or to provide a history, to research an issue, or to produce an employee to answer questions. Such requests are not covered by the Public Records Act and not legally enforceable. Nevertheless, such requests may be honored, purely as a public service, when the work involved can be accomplished quickly, or when answering requests of a certain nature are part of the District's duties and responsibilities. Since the Public Records Act does not cover requests for information, there is no prohibition against imposing conditions on the honoring of such requests,
except as may otherwise be provided by the District's own rules, practices, and procedures. Therefore, it is appropriate to ask that such requests be put in writing.
Public records requests are themselves public record unless a specific exemption applies. An example of an exemption would be a request that contains personally identifiable student information, which would make the request confidential and exempt under both federal and state law. The mere fact that an individual asks that the request be kept confidential is not sufficient reason for the district to treat it as confidential.More informationRefer to School Board Policy 8310 (“Public Records Inspection and Examination”)