Canyons District gets high marks from transparency advocacy group

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 30 2013 2:15 p.m. MST

Dr. Paul McCarty, a Canyons School District board member, speaks as the District celebrates a historic milestone in the construction of the new Corner Canyon High School in Draper on Dec. 5, 2012. On Tuesday, the district received an A+ grade in the Sunshine Review's 2013 Transparency Report Card.

Ravell Call, Deseret News

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SANDY — Canyons School District has received an A+ grade in the Sunshine Review's 2013 Transparency Report Card.

The report card, issued Tuesday, assigns grades to every state, as well as each state's largest counties, cities and school districts, based on information made available on each entity's website. The Sunshine Review is a national nonprofit organization that advocates for transparency in government

Utah school districts received an average B grade. Nationally, just 20 percent of school districts received a grade of B or higher.

"Transparency empowers citizens," said Michael Barnhart, president of Sunshine Review said in a prepared statement. "Citizens are entitled to crucial information on how the public business is conducted and how public money is spent. Without this information, voters cannot hold government accountable. Without transparency, accountability is impossible."

Grades were assigned based on Sunshine Review's 10-point Transparency Checklist, which the group applied to more than 6,000 government websites. The checklist examines the online availability of budget, academic performance, taxes and other public information.

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