Do individuals have a right to access general records from a school board?

Yes. In addition to the right of individuals to access their own personal information, MFIPPA gives the public a right to access general records held by a school board, which could include things like policies, guides, emails, meeting minutes, and procurement records.

Labour relations and employment-related matters are excluded from MFIPPA.69For example, if a parent requested access to a report about employment-related discussions between a teacher and the board, the board may choose to deny access by claiming this exclusion applies. The parent has the right to appeal the school board’s decision to the IPC. While these types of records are excluded from the scope of MFIPPA, the school board has discretion to disclose them outside of MFIPPA.

Even for records covered by MFIPPA, there are exceptions to the types of information that can be accessed. For example, if a record contains someone else’s personal information, such as a teacher or another student, in many cases MFIPPA requires that this information be redacted or removed from the record before access is granted.70

The process for making a request for access to general records from a school board under MFIPPA is the same as for making a request for personal information (see How do students and parents access personal information).

69. MFIPPA, s. 52(3)
70. MFIPPA, s. 14