R.I. Attorney General: Tuition Waiver Data Not Public Information

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — The Rhode Island attorney general’s office says the names of state university and college workers getting free tuition worth millions of dollars for themselves and their families are not public information.

The Providence Journal reports that Assistant Attorney General Michael Field has concluded that the state’s Access to Public Records Act doesn’t apply to the college tuition waivers because federal law exempts student records from public disclosure.

Last year, there were nearly 3,500 tuition waivers that cost more than $9 million, including about 1,700 waivers for employees at the University of Rhode Island, Rhode Island College and the Community College of Rhode Island and their spouses, children and domestic partners.

The Journal filed a complaint with the state last year after being denied access to information on the waivers.