As I mentioned in class, I’m happy to report that I finally got my Freedom of Information Act request documents. Unfortunately, that’s where the good news ends. I received the documents via email a little before 2pm today, and Sean and I went over the files after class. The contact at the Webster School District, Ms. Cushman, sent me a pdf of over 35 pages, so it wasn’t that hard to go through. I had requested the board meeting minutes from all meetings, regular and special, from April 2006-November 2006, since we know the pulling of the book from the library reading list happened around May or June of 2006. Since there are no official documents about the challenging of the book, Sean and I had been hoping there might’ve been a tangential board of ed discussion we could look into. Also, when we spoke with the former student, Carly, she said she couldn’t remember the name of the complainant but might have remembered him speaking at a board meeting. Thus, we had been hoping we might be able to find the complainant’s name for our case. However, the records revealed nothing.

I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect because I had never looked at board meeting minutes before, but the minutes for each meeting were pretty short. I don’t know if this is because there just wasn’t a lot going on, or if the notes are always very minimal. I had been hoping there would be something to uncover, but we were disappointed. I’m a little embarrassed because we were so excited to get these documents, and they turned out to be nothing. It reminded me of in the beginning of our research when we found the articles about our case written for the Democrat & Chronicle, and then we found that the reporter was no longer an employee of the D&C.

I am definitely feel the issues with having a case that is a little over a decade old. I think this is especially emphasized because in the mid-2000s society was transitioning to one that relied more and more on technology. What I mean is because we didn’t have the access to technology that we have now, it’s frustrating to try and find digital records because we expect the access we have now. If there was a case from today being researched in 10 years, the researchers would have much more digital information to look through and gather intel from. 

The disappointment with the meeting minutes not withstanding, I am excited to move forward with our case using the interviews we’re lining up for the next weeks. I am similarly having fun playing around with the WordPress website, but sometimes I stumble upon a function or display that I think would useful by accident, so I then have to try and find my way back to it in order to incorporate it. I’m glad I’ll be able to update my resume with my new WordPress skills. Even though the documents were a bust, I am looking on the bright side.