Ten years ago, students at Ohio University conducted a public records audit of the state's four-year universities to determine whether they were in compliance with the state's Sunshine Law. That law, detailed here, gives Ohioans access to a wide range of government records. Public universities, funded with taxpayer dollars, are subject to those laws. Ohio's public records laws are considered some of the best in the nation.
The latest Ohio Universities Public Records Audit, conducted in 2016, did three things. First, it checked how front-line university employees respond to requests from ordinary citizens. Second, it determined how long it takes universities to provide records. Third, it compared how universities performed compared to the last audit in 2005.
What we requested
Auditors requested five records from each university by asking in-person For more on our methodology, click here. What follows is a list of what we requested.
- The most recent performance evaluation of the university's Provost.
- The operating budget for the university’s College of Education during the 2014-15 academic year.
- The names of university students found responsible for a violent crime during the 2014-15 academic year.
- The total amount of money brought in by selling tickets to home football games during the 2014-15 season.
- The amount of money the university foundation spent on travel to raise money for the university foundation during the 2014-15 academic year.
How the audit came to be
The audit was first conceived by Will Drabold during his junior year at Ohio University. Following his participation in the Ohio public records audit of 2014, which did not audit universities, Drabold looked to check compliance on public campuses.
For a full list of participants, click here.