Woodland Park School District Appeals Video Surveillance Disclosure Ruling

The Woodland Park School District is disappointed with the recent lower court ruling to release passive video surveillance in response to a request made under the Colorado Open Records Act (CORA). The district will appeal this ruling as it puts our students and teachers at risk and could potentially lead to harassment of our staff and students’ families.

Attorney for the district, Bryce Carlson, declared that “video coverage is highly sensitive information, and if it falls into the wrong hands, it could threaten student and district staff safety.” For instance, knowing which entrance and exit paths are monitored by security cameras could be valuable information for someone who is planning an attack.

Additionally, if passive video surveillance were subject to disclosure under CORA, it could be used to stalk or harass anyone in any public facility, including public employees, clients, students, and their families. This could be a significant burden on public entities like school districts, which could be required to disclose massive amounts of video in response to frequent requests.

School Board member David Illingworth expressed concern stating, “This ruling calls into question the privacy of anyone present in a government facility with passive surveillance, which is just about every government facility or public space. Under Judge Sells’ ruling, for instance, the Aquatic Center could be forced to disclose surveillance to anyone interested in seeing their favorite swimmer’s latest bathing suit, or what time their ex-spouse leaves work every day.”

Woodland Park School District Superintendent, Ken Witt, stated, “Woodland Park School District will challenge this misinterpretation of CORA for the safety of our students, schools, staff, and families.”

About the Woodland Park School District Re-2 A Place of Becoming Woodland Park School District Re-2, 155 Panther Way, Woodland Park, CO 80863. Phone: (719) 686-2000. Learn more at http://wpsdk12.org