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Utah High School Discrimination Survey Results Ordered Disclosed

Nevada-based T.V. station KUTV, Inc., and reporter Carl Idsvoog (media) appealed the production denial of survey results stemming from discrimination allegations against Box Elder High School in Utah. The issue was remanded for redacted production after an in camera inspection.

The Utah State Board of Education (Board) developed the 1981 survey to determine the existence of racial or religious discrimination allegations. A statistical analysis was released based on the 963 forms received. The media motioned to compel the form's production after the Board's denial to produce. The court held that neither of two applicable statutes deemed the forms public record and dismissed the action.

On appeal, the Supreme Court of Utah held that the trial court should hold an in. camera inspection to determine any resulting harm to public interest which would outweigh the benefit of public inspection regarding any partial nondisclosure. Dissent believed that student survey responses did not constitute public records. See: KUTV, Inc. v. Utah State Board of Education. 689 P.2d 1357 (Utah 1984).

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Related legal case

KUTV, Inc. v. Utah State Board of Education