RTKL Training

The Office of Open Records regularly conducts training on the Right-to-Know Law and the Sunshine Act for groups that wish to learn about the application of these laws, including both agencies and requesters. In addition, the OOR often partners with various organizations or associations (e.g., the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, the Pennsylvania State Associations of Township Supervisors, and the Pennsylvania State Associations of Boroughs) to provide a presenter or panelist.

The OOR's basic RTKL training session includes a PowerPoint presentation providing an overview of the mechanics of requesting records under the RTKL, the agency's response, and the RTKL appeals process. The length of a basic RTKL training can vary depending on the format or the number of questions and discussion, although we can be flexible with time availability. We can also tailor a presentation to address a specific audience, such as agency officials, Open Records Officers, attorneys, community activists, or law enforcement officers.

In order to conduct a training, the OOR requires at least 30 days advance notice and a minimum of 15 attendees. Our experience is that once a notice is posted that you're hosting a session, the classes fill up quickly. We ask that the requesting group or agency designate an individual to arrange logistics for the training session. A training session with less than 15 attendees will be scheduled for a regional session to be conducted at a nearby location as deemed necessary.

To request training on the RTKL and/or the Sunshine Act, please complete this online training request form or call the OOR at (717) 346-9903. George Spiess, Chief of Outreach and Training, will get in touch with you as soon as possible.

Training Resources

RTKL Flowchart: Request through Appeal (PDF and JPEG, updated Oct. 31, 2018)

Training Request Form

View Training Schedule

PowerPoint Presentations

These files contain some of the PowerPoint presentations most recently used by our office for training. They are available for download and individual reference.

  • Nov. 2019 OOR Annual Training - RTKL & Sunshine Act (PPTX and PDF, updated Nov. 6, 2019)
  • 2018 Annual Report (PPTX, updated Mar. 2019)
  • 2019 AORO Survey (PPTX, updated Mar. 2019)
  • AOROs: Preparing Affidavits for Appeals (PPTX, updated Feb. 2020)
  • Basics for New AOROs (PPTX, updated May 2019)
  • RTKL Training for Local Government (PPTX, updated May 2020)
  • Mediation in the OOR (PPTX, updated Mar. 2019)
  • OOR Website Resources (PPTX, updated Mar. 2019)
  • PA RTKL Payment Issues (PPTX, updated May 2019)
  • PA RTKL Requester Training (PPTX, updated Mar. 2019)
  • PA Sunshine Act (PPTX, updated Apr. 2019)
  • Recent Court and OOR Decisions of Note (PPTX, updated Mar. 2019)
  • Records Management and Electronic Records Best Practices (PPTX, updated Oct. 2019)
  • RTKL 101 for Law Enforcement Agencies (PPTX, updated May 2019)
  • Standard RTK Request Form (PPTX, updated Mar 2019)

Even more PowerPoint presentations are available at the Open Records in Pennsylvania blog, maintained by the OOR's Executive Director, Erik Arneson.

Office of Open Records - 2019 Annual Training


Office of Open Records - 2019 Right-to-Know Law Roundtable (four videos)

Part 1: Judge Dominic Pileggi & Writing an Effective RTKL Request

Part 2: Enforcing OOR Final Determinations

Part 3: Law Enforcement Records and the RTKL

Part 4: Using the Right-to-Know Law for Reporting


Office of Open Records - 2018 Annual Training


Office of Open Records - 2017 Annual Training