A verdict from a complaints committee on access to information calls on the Icelandic Ministry of Education to release information on all new teaching licenses issued between 1st January 2012 and 21st February 2014. The ministry earlier this year rejected calls for the information to be released.
Fréttablaðið ran a story earlier in the year about a group of 100 teachers, who completed their three-year teaching qualifications between 2009 and 2012, and who say the education ministry discriminated unfairly against them in its issuing of teaching permits.
The hundred say their applications for teaching permits were rejected at the same time as a group of their contemporaries with the same qualifications and grades were granted permits by the ministry.
The group is demanding that the ministry grants access to information on all teaching permits, on the basis of a 2008 law on education and the employment of teachers – but their request was previously denied by the ministry.
A written answer from the Ministry of Education to the complaints committee says that the requested information is not easily accessible in any database and would need to be hand picked from the records library, Vísir.is reported.
The hundred teachers originally made their complaint to the parliamentary ombudsman who recommended the ministry acquiesce to their request. The ministry responded that it would take too much work to do so. Now the complaints committee has ruled that the accusers had the right to satisfy their suspicions and that the ministry did not have the right to refuse them. It has told the ministry to re-examine the case and decide whether or not it can provide the requested information, this time on purely legal grounds.