Public Information

This page is designed to give users direct links to some of the most frequently requested information about the Beaufort County School District. If you don’t find the information you seek on this page, try using the “Search” tool that appears in the upper right-hand corner of all pages. If you still cannot find the information you seek, feel free to contact the district’s Director of Communications, Jim Foster at (843) 322-2432.

Access to Public Records and Documents
The Beaufort County School District is committed to operating in a transparent fashion, and this includes a commitment to making public records available for inspection under the provisions of the South Carolina Freedom of Information Act. Our FOIA procedures are designed to promote open government, citizen involvement and organizational accountability.

Any member of the public may inspect, copy or receive an electronic transmission of school district records determined to be "public records" under the provisions of the FOIA. In order to maintain the effective functioning of a school district office or department, and for security reasons, certain conditions for reviewing or obtaining copies of records may apply. 

Requesting public records
Describe your request as specifically as possible. If you are uncertain about which records contain the information you desire, provide a description of the type of information you are searching for, and every attempt will be made to locate the relevant records. A great deal of information about the school district is available on our web site, and this information may help you formulate your request.

Please note that certain records are exempt from disclosure under FOIA or other statutes and are not available for public inspection (S.C. Code Section 30-4-40). The school district is not required to create an electronic version of a public record when one does not exist.

The FOIA requires a timely response on our part. After we receive your request, we have 10 days (excepting weekends and public holidays) to respond as to whether the information you request will be released or whether it will be withheld due to a specific exemption in the FOIA. If the record is more than 24 months old, we have 20 days to provide an initial response. This determination is not required to include a final decision or express an opinion as to whether specific portions of requested documents may be subject to redaction.

If your request is granted, we will provide the requested documents no later than 30 calendar days from the date of the initial response. If the documents are more than 24 months old, we will provide them within 35 calendar days.

Response, determination and production deadlines may be extended by written mutual agreement between the district and the person requesting the documents.

Fees
The district may establish and collect reasonable fees not to exceed the actual cost of the search, retrieval and redaction of records. These fees will not exceed the prorated hourly salary of the lowest-paid employee who, in the reasonable discretion of the school district, has the necessary skill and training to perform the request. These fees will be uniform and will not exceed the prevailing commercial rate for making copies. We will not apply copying charges to electronically transmitted records, but we may charge for the staff time required to transfer documents to electronic formats. 

After receiving a written request for information under FOIA, the district will provide the most reasonable available estimate of costs involved in responding. An advance deposit of 25 percent of the total reasonably anticipated cost of reproducing the records will be required before the district can begin the process. The remainder of the cost must be paid when the information is delivered. If the actual cost is less than estimated, only the actual cost will be charged.

Making your request
All requests for information under FOIA must be submitted in writing to District Risk Manager Jennifer Staton at:

Risk Manager
Beaufort County School District
2900 Mink Point Blvd
PO Drawer 309
Beaufort, SC 29901-0309

To assist you in filing a request, you may choose to print out a request form HERE that can be filled out and mailed to the address listed above. You can also choose to send your request via e-mail.

The Information Request Form can be completed online HERE.

Reviewing public records in person
If you ask to review original documents, we may request that you follow procedures to protect the integrity of public records:

  • You may be supervised by a school district employee within the area where the records are stored and/or maintained.

  • You may need to review records in a designated area or schedule a particular time of day so that day-to-day activities of that specific office or department are not disrupted.

Finding additional assistance
The South Carolina Press Association has developed a Citizen’s Guide to the Freedom of Information Act that explains the provisions of the law in simple, easy-to-understand language.