Easton Area School Dist. v. Miller

Miller submitted a Right to Know Law (“RTKL”) request to the District, seeking a copy of surveillance video from a school bus. The District denied the request. Miller appealed to the Office of Open Records (“OOR”), which ordered the District to disclose the video. The District appealed to the court of common pleas, which agreed with the OOR and ordered disclosure of the video. The District appealed to the Commonwealth Court, which affirmed. The Supreme Court of PA accepted discretionary review of this matter to address the following issue, as stated by the District: “Whether the Commonwealth Court erred as a matter of law in determining that the requested video, which depicts children on a school bus during the school day, is not exempt from disclosure under [FERPA].” The PA Supreme Court held that, because the District did not demonstrate it would lose federal funding as a result of disclosing the video, the District may not avail itself of the exception to disclosure found in the RTKL. Moreover, the video itself is a public record subject to disclosure, but the video’s images, which depicted the personally identifiable information of students, were exempt from public disclosure pursuant to FERPA, and therefore also exempt from public disclosure under the RTKL.

EASTON

EASTON-CD

EASTON-CD2