Isle of Wight County Schools is committed to compliance with Virginia’s Freedom of Information Act, and shall process all requests in accordance with the procedures outlined below.
The Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), located 2.2-3700 et seq. of the Code of Virginia, guarantees citizens of the Commonwealth and representatives of the media access to public records held by public bodies, public officials, and public employees. A public record is any writing or recording -- regardless of whether it is a paper record, an electronic file, an audio or video recording, or any other format -- that is prepared or owned by, or in the possession of a public body or its officers, employees or agents in the transaction of public business. All public records are presumed to be open, and may only be withheld if a specific, statutory exemption applies. The policy of FOIA states that the purpose of FOIA is to promote an increased awareness by all persons of governmental activities.
Making a Request
Your request must identify the records you are seeking with "reasonable specificity," so that the records can be properly identified and located. In addition, your request must ask for existing records or documents. FOIA gives the right to inspect or copy records; it does not require IWCS to create a record that does not exist. Requests should be made directly to the Community Relations & Media Affairs department.
IWCS is allowed five working days to reply to a FOIA request. The first day of the five working days is considered the day after the request is received. The five-day period does not include weekends or holidays.
A written response will be provided if the requested records cannot be found or do not exist. Furthermore, if it is reasonably impossible for IWCS to respond to the request within the five-day period, a written statement will be provided to explain the conditions which make the response impossible. This allows for seven additional working days to respond to the request, giving a total of 12 working days to respond to the FOIA request.
IWCS maintains the right to withhold any records requested under FOIA that are subject to a specific statutory exemption.
A cost may be associated with the records that are being requested. FOIA allows the division to charge for the actual costs of responding to FOIA requests. The cost may include staff time spent searching for the requested records, copying costs or any other costs directly related to supplying the requested records. Any costs estimated over $200 may require a deposit in order to proceed with the request.