Responsive to this request, HCPSS did not begin collecting arrest data until the 2015-2016 school year. Available under MPIA 2018-224, the fields (school name, school level, gender, race, date of arrest, arresting offense and location of arrest) included in the HCPSS submission of 2015-2016 data to the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) were the only details collected from police reports for those incidents the local police indicated were student arrests (as we were not yet collecting our own data) for this initial report.
For the 2016-2017 school year, using the information/fields available from 2016 Maryland Student Arrest Data Collection Manual, additional information was collected on each arrest and compiled by HCPSS at the student level. At the individual student level however, the specific items requested, including race, ethnicity, gender, grade, English language learners, officer, type of arrest, days absent, and school, even with personally identifiable information (PII) removed, have the potential to reveal educational records under FERPA.
Those fields at the individual student level would require us to apply disclosure avoidance techniques in order to be preserve PII. The application of such techniques, much like the technical skills required to program a database to pull new reports/records, constitutes the creation of an entirely new record. Under the MPIA process, and as advised in the Fourteenth Edition of the Maryland Public Information Act Manual created by Maryland’s Office of the Attorney General, an agency is only obligated to produce existing records and is not required to program/generate new reports that are not already used in the normal course of business. Please note, while HCPSS does not have arrest data for the years requested in an aggregated format, only in the chart along with all associated student-level data, it will likely be available through MSDE reporting in the future although we are not aware of their timeframe.