The New York State Open Meetings Law provides that a Board of Education compile and make available minutes of all meetings. This applies to regular and special meetings, meetings of a committee or subcommittee of a Board, and executive sessions of such meetings.
Minutes must consist of a record or summary of all motions, proposals, resolutions, and any other matters formally voted upon by the Board as well as the vote itself.
If no action is taken in an executive session, minutes need not be compiled. However, minutes must be compiled and made available of any action that is taken in executive session by a formal vote. The minutes must include the date, a record or summary of the final determination of the action, and the vote.
The Freedom of Information Law requires that a record be kept of the final vote of each Board member in every action in which the member votes. Minutes that refer to a vote must therefore indicate who voted in favor and who voted against.
The summary of action may further exclude any matter which is deniable under the Freedom of Information Law. The Freedom of Information Law allows a Board to deny access to information in certain enumerated categories.
State Education Law provides that the clerk of each school district keep a record of the proceeding of all meetings of the Board in an official book provided for that purpose.
Under the Freedom of Information Law, minutes of executive sessions must be made available to the public within one week after the date of the executive session. Minutes of all other meetings must be made available within two weeks after the meeting. The Board may disseminate the minutes marked “draft” or “tentative,” pending final approval by the Board.
Refs: Open Meeting Law, Public Officers Law, Section 100 et seq.
Freedom of Information Law, Public Officers Law, Section 84 et seq.
Education Law, Section 2121