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Letter: Hinsdale District 86 access policy raises concern

As a parent whose children will soon attend Hinsdale Central High School, I am concerned about the current policy members of the School Board are proposing. The policy allows any board member to access student records. They do not even have to give a reason to justify looking at the records.

The exact words: “Unlimited access to documents… including personnel and student records with no requirement that any reason for the request be stated.” It is not stated in the policy that the board has to notify the parents or ask for parental permission to access student records.

With that kind of language, I am concerned about the confidentiality of my children’s records from the prying eyes of a board member who may have a personal agenda or that my child’s personal information might be used in or for a personal or political agenda of a board member. If this policy is passed, who will protect the privacy of my child?

The policy does allow the board to deny a request if the request is abusive, but since there is no requirement for a reason, how in the world can the board find the request abusive? Further it takes an extraordinary majority to deny the phantom request as abusive.

And the frosting on the cake is the board is ready to pay with tax dollars the attorney fees of the board member if this goes to court up to $5,000 or more. With the language of the current policy, how can a student’s right to privacy be protected? This policy violates my child’s right to privacy.

Valerie H. Ruth

Clarendon Hills

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