Freedom of
Information Law

Emblaze Academy Charter School complies with
New York State’s “Freedom of Information Law” (FOIL)
Please email the Founding Director of Operations, Ms. Rojas at [email protected] for the Online FOIL Submission Form.


Ø Within 5 business days of receipt of a written or electronic request, the school shall make the information available to the person requesting it, deny the request in writing, or provide a written acknowledgment of receipt of the request that supplies an approximate date, which shall be reasonable under the circumstances, for when the request will be granted or denied.

Ø If Emblaze Academy determines to grant access to the requested information, and if circumstances prevent disclosure to the person making the request within 20 business days of the acknowledgment of receipt of the request, the school shall state, in writing, both the reason for the delay and a date certain, within a reasonable period of time, depending on the circumstances, when the request will be granted in whole or in part. Failure of the school to conform to the provisions of paragraph one above or this paragraph two, shall constitute a denial of the request for information.

Ø If an individual is denied access to a record, he or she may, within 30 days (or such period as defined by law, as may be modified over the course of the charter), appeal such denial to the Principal.

Ø Upon timely receipt of such an appeal, Emblaze Academy shall, within 10 business days of the receipt of the appeal (or such period defined by law, as may be modified over the course of the charter), fully explain the reasons for further denial or provide access to the record sought. The school also must forward a copy of the appeal, as well as its ultimate determination, to the New York State Committee on Open Government.

Exceptions to disclosure: Emblaze Academy may deny access to a requested record for a variety of reasons, including that:

a) such access would constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy;

b) such access would violate either state or federal law;

c) such records are compiled for law enforcement purposes; and/or

d) such records are inter-agency or intra agency materials which are not statistical or factual tabulations of data, instructions to staff that affect the public or a final policy. Except for records specified in Public Officers Law §87(3), the school shall not be required to prepare any record that it does not maintain or have in its possession.

The school may charge a copying fee for each paper page (up to 8.5”x11”) requested to be copied. The fee shall be the maximum fee allowed by New York law. Preparation of electronic copies of records will be charged in accordance with NY Public Officers Law §87(1)(c).

The school should promulgate FOIL regulations pursuant to Public Officers Law §87(1)(b) and 21 NYCRR Part 1401.

The school shall post required FOIL information on its website in accordance with Public Officers Law §87(1)(c).

Subject Matter List

The School will maintain the following records:

● Student Records ● Academic Records ● Health Records ● Employee Records ● Corporate / Governance Documents ● Meeting Minutes ● By-Laws ● Resolutions ● Trustee Disclosure Forms ● Management Records ● Billing Records ● District Correspondence ● SED Correspondence ● FOIL Records ● Complaints ● Manuals ● Curriculum Records ● Student Service Records ● Food Service Records ● Discipline Records ● Professional Development Records ● Facilities Records.


Parents (includes legal guardians or persons in parental relationships) and Eligible Students (student 18 years and older) can expect the following:

1.A student’s personally identifiable information (PII) cannot be sold or released for any commercial purpose. PII, as defined by Education Law § 2-d and FERPA, includes direct identifiers such as a student’s name or identification number, parent’s name, or address; and indirect identifiers such as a student’s date of birth, which when linked to or combined with other information can be used to distinguish or trace a student’s identity. Please see FERPA’s regulations at 34 CFR 99.3 for a more complete definition.

2.The right to inspect and review the complete contents of the student’s education record stored or maintained by an educational agency. This right may not apply to parents of an Eligible Student.

3.State and federal laws such as Education Law § 2-d; the Commissioner of Education’s Regulations at 8 NYCRR Part 121, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) at 12 U.S.C. 1232g (34 CFR Part 99); Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”) at 15 U.S.C. 6501-6502 (16 CFR Part 312); Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (“PPRA”) at 20 U.S.C. 1232h (34 CFR Part 98); the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (“IDEA”) at 20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq. (34 CFR Part 300); protect the confidentiality of a student’s identifiableinformation.

4.Safeguards associated with industry standards and best practices including but not limited to encryption, firewalls and password protection must be in place when student PII is stored or transferred.

5.A complete list of all student data elements collected by NYSED is available at and by writing to:

Chief Privacy Officer, New York State Education Department,

89 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12234.

6.The right to have complaints about possible breaches and unauthorized disclosures of PII addressed. Complaints may be submitted to NYSED at, by mail to:

Chief Privacy Officer, New York State Education Department,

89 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12234

Or by email to [email protected]; or by telephone at 518-474-0937.

7. To be notified in accordance with applicable laws and regulations if a breach or unauthorized release of PIIoccurs.

8.Educational agency workers that handle PII will receive training on applicable state and federallaws, policies, and safeguards associated with industry standards and best practices that protect PII.

9.Educational agency contracts with vendors that receive PII will address statutory and regulatory data privacy and security requirements.

Important Notice of Additional Policies

Emblaze Academy Charter School is committed to providing a safe and productive learning environment in which all students are treated with respect and dignity. In accordance with New York State’s Dignity for All Students Act (“DASA”), Emblaze Academy will promptly address all incidents of harassment and/or discrimination of or by any student enrolled at the School. This includes bullying, taunting or intimidation in all their myriad forms.

Policy Definitions:

“School property” means in or within any building, structure, athletic playing field, playground, parking lot, or land contained within the real property boundary line of a public elementary or secondary school; or in or on a school bus, as defined in section 142 of the vehicle and traffic law.

“School function” means a school-sponsored extra-curricular event or activity.

“Harassment” and “bullying” shall mean the creation of a hostile environment by conduct or by threats, intimidation or abuse, including cyberbullying, that (a) has or would have the effect of unreasonably and substantially interfering with a student’s educational performance, opportunities or benefits, or mental, emotional or physical well-being; or (b) reasonably causes or would reasonably be expected to cause a student to fear for his or her physical safety; or (c) reasonably causes or would reasonably be expected to cause physical injury or emotional harm to a student; or (d) occurs off school property and creates or would foreseeably create a risk of substantial disruption within the school environment, where it is foreseeable that the conduct, threats, intimidation or abuse might reach school property. Acts of harassment and bullying shall include, but not be limited to those acts based on a person’s actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender or sex. For the purposes of this definition the term “threats, intimidation or abuse” shall include verbal and non-verbal actions.

“Cyberbullying” shall mean harassment or bullying as defined above, where such harassment or bullying occurs through any form of electronic communication.

Student Rights:

No student shall be subjected to harassment or bullying, including cyberbullying, by employees or students on School property, on the School’s remote learning platform, or at a School function. Additionally, no student shall be subjected to discrimination based on the student’s actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender, or sex, by School employees or students on School property, on the School’s remote learning platform, or at a School function.

The Emblaze Academy Code of Conduct prohibits bullying and threatening behaviors[1] , as well as harassment; students who engage in such behavior will be disciplined as set forth in the Code of Conduct. Further, the school reserves the right to discipline students, consistent with our Code of Conduct, who engage in harassment or bullying of students off school property under circumstances where such off-campus conduct:

1. affects the educative process;

2. endangers the health and safety of Emblaze Academy students within the educational system; or

3. is reasonably believed to pose a danger to the health and safety of Emblaze Academy students within the educational system.

This includes written and/or verbal harassment which materially and substantially disrupts the work and discipline of the School and/or which School Leaders reasonably forecast as being likely to materially and substantially disrupt the work and discipline of the School.

1 Dignity Act Coordinator (DAC):
Emblaze Academy has designated the Upper School Counselor to serve as the Dignity Act Coordinators (“DACs”). The DACs are trained to handle human relations in the areas of race, color, weight, national origin, ethic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender and sex. The names and contact information [2] for the DAC is posted on the School’s website on the “Health and Safety” page and are as follows:

CARYN RHODES, UPPER SCHOOL COUNSELOR / [email protected] / 929-388-0011

The DAC is accessible to students and other employees for consultation and advice.

DASA at Emblaze Academy:


Our guidelines promote a safe and supportive school climate while discouraging, among other things, harassment, bullying and/or discrimination against students by students and/or school employees. Our staff and students are trained on techniques on how to create a safe and supportive school climate. Staff are trained and coached on Social and Emotional concepts and how to include them in the curriculum and use them for classroom management. Additionally, we have weekly Advisory lessons where students are taught about in-person and virtual harassment, bullying and discrimination. In the event of a violation of the Code of Conduct, teachers, deans, counselors and the leadership team will work with students and their families to restore the damage and rebuild a positive learning community.

Reporting and Investigating:

All Emblaze Academy staff members are responsible for reporting harassment, bullying or discrimination of which they have been made aware to their immediate supervisor. Any student who believes that s/he is being subjected to harassment, bullying or discrimination, as well as any other person who has knowledge of or witnesses any possible occurrence of harassment, bullying or discrimination, shall report the harassment, bullying or discrimination to any staff member, one or both DACs, or the Co-Head of Schools. A staff member who witnesses harassment, bullying or discrimination or who receives an oral or written report of harassment, bullying or discrimination shall promptly orally notify the Head of School not later than one school day after witnessing, or receiving a report of, such acts and shall file a written report with the Head of School not later than two school days after making such oral report.

The Co-Head of Schools shall promptly investigate the complaint and take appropriate action to include, as necessary, referral to the next level of supervisory authority (e.g. the Board of Trustees) and/or other official designated by the Board of Trustees to investigate allegations of harassment, bullying or discrimination. When an investigation reveals any such verified harassment, bullying or discrimination, the School will take prompt actions that are reasonably calculated to: end the harassment, bullying or discrimination; eliminate any hostile environment; create a more positive school culture and climate; prevent recurrence of the behavior; and ensure the safety of the student or students against whom such harassment, bullying or discrimination was directed. Any such actions shall be consistent with the Emblaze Academy Code of Conduct, which students and families are fully aware of. Follow-up inquiries and/or appropriate monitoring of the alleged harasser and victim shall be made to ensure that the harassment, bullying or discrimination has not resumed and that those involved in the investigation of allegations of harassment, bullying or discrimination have not suffered retaliation.

Emblaze Academy will report material incidents of harassment, bullying and/or discrimination to the State Education Department as required by law.

The Co-Head of Schools shall promptly notify law enforcement authorities when the Co-Head of Schools believe that any harassment, bullying or discrimination constitutes criminal conduct.

2 No Retaliation:
Emblaze Academy prohibits any retaliatory behavior directed against complainants, victims, witnesses, and/or any other individuals who participate in the investigation of allegations of harassment, bullying or discrimination. All complainants and those who participate in the investigation of a complaint in conformity with state law and School policies and who have acted reasonably and in good faith, have the right to be free from retaliation of any kind.

Distribution of Policy:

Emblaze Academy shall distribute a written or electronic copy of this Policy to all employees, students, and parents/guardians at least once during every school year.

Child Abuse Reporting

Who can report child abuse or neglect?

Anyone can report suspected child abuse or neglect. Reporting abuse or neglect can protect a child and get help for a family.

Mandatory Reporters of Child Abuse and Neglect

All U.S. States and territories have laws identifying persons who are required to report suspected child abuse or neglect. Mandatory reporters may include social workers, teachers and other school personnel, child care providers, physicians and other health-care workers, mental health professionals, and law enforcement officers. Some States require any person who suspects child abuse or neglect to report.

What do I report when I suspect child abuse or neglect?

Provide a complete, honest account of what you observed that led you to suspect the occurrence of child abuse or neglect. Any reasonable suspicion is sufficient.

What Is Child Abuse and Neglect? Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms

Learn how to identify and report child abuse or neglect and refer children who may have been maltreated. This factsheet provides information on the legal definitions, different types, and signs and symptoms of abuse and neglect.

What will happen after I make a report of child abuse or neglect?

After you make a report, it will be sent to child protective services (CPS). When CPS receives a report, the CPS worker reviews the information and determines if an investigation is needed. The CPS worker may talk with the family, the child, or others to help determine what is making the child unsafe. The CPS worker can help parents or other caregivers get services, education, or other assistance.


Call or text 1.800.4.A.CHILD (1.800.422.4453).

Professional crisis counselors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in over 170 languages.

All calls are confidential.

The hotline offers crisis intervention, information, and referrals to thousands of emergency, social service, and support resources.