Caldwell: In Poudre School District, a lesson on how not to handle public records

From The Denver Post: If you deal with government officials long enough, you come to recognize certain truisms.

They don’t like controversy. They don’t particularly want you to second-guess them. And they sometimes act as if the public records they create belong to them, not the taxpayers who finance their work.

A situation that began in 2010 and has unfolded in the Poudre School District over the last few years is all that and worse. Frankly, I’ve never seen anything like it.

Ephraim and Donna Starr are active — and, I would say, assertive — parents who have pushed hard to make sure their autistic child gets the right services from the district.

To parents of special-needs children, it will come as no surprise that such action is sometimes necessary. And surely those school district officials who work in special education understand how important it is to parents to make sure their children have appropriate instruction.

Yet, certain Poudre district officials treated the Starrs with disdain, even ordering the destruction of e-mails in anticipation of a potential public records request from the parents.

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