News Story

Detroit Public Schools Fails To Respond To Overdue Open Records Request

It’s the law

The Detroit Public Schools Community District appears to be in violation of the state’s open records law for refusing to release public records containing employee salary information. More than a month after the date the law requires the district to provide the information, it has failed to do so.

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy requested the information on Sept. 14. Michigan’s Freedom of Information Act gives government entities up to 15 business days to respond to open records requests. For this request, that meant the deadline was Oct. 5.

District officials have acknowledged receiving inquiries about the status of its response, and said they would follow up, but as of Nov. 9, the district has not provided the requested information.

Cash Caldwell, freedom of information act coordinator for the Detroit Public Schools Community District, said in an Oct. 26 email to the Mackinac Center that he received an email from the department compiling the requested information and that he could have it by the end of that day. But Caldwell did not respond again, and as of Nov. 9, the district had not provided the information..

Responding to a Nov. 2 email from Michigan Capitol Confidential asking about the information request, school district spokeswomen Chrystal Wilson wrote that she was checking with the district’s legal team. Nothing has been heard since then, and Wilson did not respond to a Nov. 9 Michigan Capitol Confidential email.