Data Protection Policy
We aim to ensure that all personal data collected about staff, pupils, parents, governors, visitors and other individuals is collected, stored and processed in accordance with the UK data protection legislation (the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA 2018).
This policy applies to all personal data, regardless of whether it is in paper or electronic format
This policy meets the requirements of the UK GDPR following the incorporation of the EU GDPR into UK legislation, with some amendments outlined in The Data Protection, Privacy and Electronic Communications (Amendments etc) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 and the DPA 2018. It is based on guidance published by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) on the GDPR.
It meets the requirements of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 when referring to our use of biometric data (if any). It also reflects the ICO’s code of practice for the use of surveillance cameras and personal information.
In addition, this policy complies with regulation 5 of the Education (Pupil Information) (England) Regulations 2005, which gives parents the right of access to their child’s educational record.
Any information relating to an identified, or identifiable, living individual.
This may include the individual’s:
It may also include factors specific to the individual’s physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity.
Special categories of personal data
Personal data which is more sensitive and so needs more protection, including information about an individual’s:
Anything done to personal data, such as collecting, recording, organising, structuring, storing, adapting, altering, retrieving, using, disseminating, erasing or destroying.
Processing can be automated or manual.
The identified or identifiable individual whose personal data is held or processed.
A person or organisation that determines the purposes and the means of processing of personal data.
A person or other body, other than an employee of the data controller, who processes personal data on behalf of the data controller.
Personal data breach
A breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to personal data.
Our school processes personal data relating to parents, pupils, staff, governors, visitors and others, and therefore is a data controller.
The school is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and shall pay the appropriate registration fee annually or as otherwise legally required.
This policy applies to all staff employed by our school, and to external organisations or individuals working on our behalf. Staff who do not comply with this policy may face disciplinary action.
The governing board has overall responsibility for ensuring that our school complies with all relevant data protection obligations body.
Data protection officer
The data protection officer (DPO) is responsible for overseeing the implementation of this policy, monitoring our compliance with data protection law, and developing related policies and guidelines where applicable.
The first point of contact for individuals whose data the school processes is the school’s GDPR Lead, Rob Slater. However, individuals may contact the DPO direct. The DPO is first point of contact for the ICO.
Full details of the DPO’s responsibilities are set out in the Service Level Agreement.
Our DPO is Richard Lewis-Ogden and is contactable on telephone 0113 3368400 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Headteacher acts as the representative of the data controller on a day-to-day basis.
Staff are responsible for:
- Collecting, storing and processing any personal data in accordance with this policy
- Informing the school of any changes to their personal data, such as a change of address
- Contacting the DPO in the following circumstances:
- With any questions about the operation of this policy, data protection law, retaining personal data or keeping personal data secure
- If they have any concerns that this policy is not being followed
- If they are unsure whether or not they have a lawful basis to use personal data in a particular way
- If they need to rely on or capture consent, draft a privacy notice, deal with data protection rights invoked by an individual, or transfer personal data outside the UK
- If there has been a data breach
- Whenever they are engaging in a new activity that may affect the privacy rights of individuals
- If they need help with any contracts or sharing personal data with third parties
The UK GDPR is based on data protection principles that our school must comply with.
The principles say that personal data must be:
- Processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner
- Collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes
- Adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary to fulfil the purposes for which it is processed
- Accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date
- Kept for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which it is processed
- Processed in a way that ensures it is appropriately secure
Lawfulness, fairness and transparency
We will only process personal data where we have one of 6 ‘lawful bases’ (legal reasons) to do so under data protection law:
- The data needs to be processed so that the school can fulfil a contract with the individual, or the individual has asked the school to take specific steps before entering into a contract
- The data needs to be processed so that the school can comply with a legal obligation
- The data needs to be processed to ensure the vital interests of the individual e.g. to protect someone’s life
- The data needs to be processed so that the school, as a public authority, can perform a task in the public interest, and carry out its official functions
- The data needs to be processed for the legitimate interests of the school or a third party (provided the individual’s rights and freedoms are not overridden)
- The individual (or their parent/carer when appropriate in the case of a pupil) has freely given clear consent
For special categories of personal data, we will also meet one of the special category conditions for processing which are set out in the GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018.
Whilst the majority of digital systems we use in school are to support the teaching and learning of our pupils, and therefore we have a legal basis for processing, there may be times that we use other tools. Where we offer such online services to pupils and we intend to rely on consent as a basis for processing, we will get parental consent (except for online counselling and preventive services).
Whenever we first collect personal data directly from individuals, we will provide them with the relevant information required by data protection law.
Limitation, minimisation and accuracy
We will only collect personal data for specified, explicit and legitimate reasons. We will explain these reasons to the individuals when we first collect their data. We will take appropriate steps to ensure that the data held is accurate such as regular data verification exercises.
If we want to use personal data for reasons other than those given when we first obtained it, we will inform the individuals concerned before we do so, and seek consent where necessary.
Staff must only process personal data where it is necessary in order to do their jobs.
When staff no longer need the personal data they hold, they must ensure it is deleted or anonymised. This will be done in line with the record of processing activities and the retention schedule as detailed in the Information and Records Management Society’s toolkit for schools.
We will not normally share personal data with anyone else, but may do so where:
- There is an issue with a pupil or parent/carer that puts the safety of our staff at risk
- We need to liaise with other agencies – we will seek consent if this is appropriate before doing this
- Our suppliers or contractors need data to enable us to provide services to our staff and pupils – for example, IT companies. When doing this, we will:
- Only appoint suppliers or contractors which can provide sufficient guarantees that they comply with UK data protection law
- Establish a data sharing agreement where significant amounts of personal data or special category data is being shared with the supplier or contractor, either in the contract or as a standalone agreement, to ensure the fair and lawful processing of any personal data we share
- Only share data that the supplier or contractor needs to carry out their service, and information necessary to keep them safe while working with us
We may also share personal data with emergency services and local authorities to help them to respond to an emergency situation that affects any of our pupils or staff.
Where we transfer personal data internationally including to the European Economic Area, we will do so in accordance with UK data protection law.
Subject access requests
Individuals have a right to make a ‘subject access request’ to gain access to personal information that the school holds about them. This includes:
- Confirmation that their personal data is being processed
- Access to a copy of the data
- The purposes of the data processing
- The categories of personal data concerned
- Who the data has been, or will be, shared with
- How long the data will be stored for, or if this isn’t possible, the criteria used to determine this period
- The source of the data, if not the individual
- Whether any automated decision-making is being applied to their data, and what the significance and consequences of this might be for the individual
- Where relevant. The existence of the right to request rectification, erasure or restriction or to object to such processing
- The right to lodge a complaint with the ICO or another supervisory body
- The safeguards provided if the data is being transferred internationally
Subject access requests should wherever possible be submitted in writing, either by letter, email or fax to the Headteacher or to the DPO. They should include:
- Name of individual
- Correspondence address
- Contact number and email address
- Details of the information requested
If staff receive a subject access request they must immediately notify their line manager and the DPO.
Children and subject access requests
Personal data about a child belongs to that child, and not the child's parents or carers. For a parent or carer to make a subject access request with respect to their child, the child must either be unable to understand their rights and the implications of a subject access request, or have given their consent.
Children below the age of 12 are generally not regarded to be mature enough to understand their rights and the implications of a subject access request. Therefore, most subject access requests from parents or carers of pupils at our school may be granted without the express permission of the pupil. This is not a rule and a pupil’s ability to understand their rights will always be judged on a case-by-case basis.
Responding to subject access requests
When responding to requests, we:
- May ask the individual to provide up to two forms of identification
- May contact the individual via phone to confirm the request was made
- Will respond without delay and within one calendar month of receipt of the request
- Will provide the information free of charge
- May tell the individual we will comply within three months of receipt of the request, where a request is complex or numerous. We will inform the individual of this within one month, and explain why the extension is necessary
We will not disclose information if it:
- Might cause serious harm to the physical or mental health of the pupil or another individual
- Would reveal that the child is at risk of abuse, where the disclosure of that information would not be in the child’s best interests
- Would include another person’s personal data that we cannot reasonably anonymise and we don’t have the other person’s consent and it would be unreasonable to proceed without it
- Is part of certain sensitive documents such as those related to crime, immigration, legal proceedings or legal professional privilege, management forecast, negotiations, confidential references or exam scripts
If the request is unfounded or excessive, we may refuse to act on it, or charge a reasonable fee in order to cover our administration costs.
A request is deemed to be unfounded or excessive if it is repetitive, or asks for further copies of the same information.
When we refuse a request, we will tell the individual why, and tell them they have the right to complain to the ICO.
Other data protection rights of the individual
In addition to the right to make a subject access request (see above), and to receive information when we are collecting their data about how we use and process it (see section 7), individuals also have the right to:
- Withdraw their consent to processing at any time
- Ask us to rectify, erase or restrict processing of their personal data, or object to the processing of it (in certain circumstances)
- Prevent use of their personal data for direct marketing
- Challenge processing which has been justified on the basis of public interest
- Object to decisions based solely on automated decision making or profiling (decisions taken with no human involvement, that might negatively affect them)
- Be notified of a data breach in certain circumstances
- Make a complaint to the ICO
- Ask for their personal data to be transferred to a third party in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format (in certain circumstances)
Individuals should submit any request to exercise these rights to the DPO. If staff receive such a request, they must immediately forward it to the DPO.
Parents, or those with parental responsibility, have a legal right to free access to their child’s educational record (which includes most information about a pupil) within 15 school days of receipt of a written request. This right applies up to the child’s 18th birthday.
Note that in the context of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, a “child” means a person under the age of 18.
If we use pupils’ biometric data as part of an automated biometric recognition system (for example, pupils use finger prints to receive school dinners instead of paying with cash we will comply with the requirements of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012.
Parents/carers will be notified before any biometric recognition system is put in place or before their child first takes part in it. The school will get written consent from at least one parent or carer before we take any biometric data from their child and first process it.
Parents/carers and pupils have the right to choose not to use the school’s biometric system(s). We will provide alternative means of accessing the relevant services for those pupils.
As required by law, if a pupil refuses to participate in, or continue to participate in, the processing of their biometric data, we will not process that data irrespective of any consent given by the pupil’s parent(s)/carer(s).
Where staff members or other adults use the school’s biometric system(s), we will also obtain their consent before they first take part in it, and provide alternative means of accessing the relevant service if they object. Staff and other adults can also withdraw consent at any time, and the school will delete any relevant data already captured.
We may use CCTV in various locations around the school site to ensure it remains safe. We will adhere to the ICO’s code of practice for the use of CCTV.
We do not need to ask individuals’ permission to use CCTV, but we make it clear where individuals are being recorded. Security cameras are clearly visible and accompanied by prominent signs explaining that CCTV is in use.
Any enquiries about the CCTV system should be directed to Dawn Robertson, Operational Manager
As part of our school activities, we may take photographs and record images of individuals within our school. We have a legal basis for doing so for the purpose of identifying pupils. We will obtain written consent from parents/carers for photographs and videos to be taken of their child for communication, marketing and promotional materials. We will clearly explain how the photograph and/or video will be used to both the parent/carer and pupil.
Where we need parental consent, we will clearly explain how the photograph and/or video will be used to both the parent/carer and pupil. Where we don’t need parental consent, we will clearly explain how the photograph and/or video will be used.
Uses may include:
- Within school on notice boards and in school magazines, brochures, newsletters, etc.
- Outside of school by external agencies such as the school photographer, newspapers, campaigns
- Online on our school website or social media pages
Consent can be refused or withdrawn at any time. If consent is withdrawn, we will delete the photograph or video and not distribute it further.
When using photographs and videos in this way we will not accompany them with any other personal information about the child, to ensure they cannot be identified.
Parents/students will not be permitted to take photographs or make videos other than for their own personal and domestic use. Such photographs and videos will not be shared publicly – e.g. via social media.
We will put measures in place to show that we have integrated data protection into all of our data processing activities, including:
- Appointing a suitably qualified DPO, and ensuring they have the necessary resources to fulfil their duties and maintain their expert knowledge
- Only processing personal data that is necessary for each specific purpose of processing, and always in line with the data protection principles set out in relevant data protection law (see section 6)
- Completing privacy impact assessments where the school’s processing of personal data presents a high risk to rights and freedoms of individuals, and when introducing new technologies (the DPO will advise on this process)
- Integrating data protection into internal documents including this policy, any related policies and privacy notices
- Regularly training members of staff on data protection law, this policy, any related policies and any other data protection matters; we will also keep a record of attendance
- Regularly conducting reviews and audits to test our privacy measures and make sure we are compliant
- Putting appropriate checks in place if we transfer any personal data outside the UK where no adequacy agreements are in place
- Maintaining records of our processing activities, including:
- For the benefit of data subjects, making available the name and contact details of our school and DPO and all information we are required to share about how we use and process their personal data (via our privacy notices)
- For all personal data that we hold, maintaining an internal record of the type of data, data subject, how and why we are using the data, any third-party recipients, how and why we are storing the data, retention periods and how we are keeping the data secure
We will protect personal data and keep it safe from unauthorised or unlawful access, alteration, processing or disclosure, and against accidental or unlawful loss, destruction or damage.
- Paper-based records and portable electronic devices, such as laptops and hard drives that contain personal data are kept under lock and key when not in use
- Papers containing confidential personal data must not be left on office and classroom desks, on staffroom tables, or left anywhere else where there is general access
- Where personal information needs to be taken off site
- Passwords should be at least 10 characters long containing letters and numbers are used to access school computers, laptops and other electronic devices. Staff and pupils are reminded to change their passwords at regular intervals and not reuse passwords from other sites
- Encryption software is used to protect all portable devices and removable media, such as laptops and USB devices
- Staff, pupils or governors who store personal information on their personal devices are expected to follow the same security procedures as for school-owned equipment.
- Where we need to share personal data with a third party, we carry out due diligence and take reasonable steps to ensure it is stored securely and adequately protected (see section 8)
Personal data that is no longer needed will be disposed of securely. Personal data that has become inaccurate or out of date will also be disposed of securely, where we cannot or do not need to rectify or update it.
For example, we will shred or incinerate paper-based records, and overwrite or delete electronic files. We may also use a third party to safely dispose of records on the school’s behalf. If we do so, we will require the third party to provide sufficient guarantees that it complies with data protection law.
The school will make all reasonable endeavours to ensure that there no personal data breaches occur.
However, in the unlikely event of a suspected data breach, we will follow the procedure set out in appendix 1.
When appropriate, we will report the data breach to the ICO within 72 hours. Such breaches in a school context may include, but are not limited to:
- A non-anonymised dataset being published on the school website which shows the exam results of pupils eligible for the pupil premium
- Safeguarding information being made available to an unauthorised person
- The theft of a school laptop containing non-encrypted personal data about pupils
All staff are provided with data protection training as part of their induction process. In line with the ICO recommendation, refresher training will be provided to all staff regularly and not less than biannually.
Data protection will also form part of continuing professional development, where changes to legislation, guidance or the school’s processes make it necessary.
The DPO is responsible for monitoring and reviewing this policy.
This policy will be reviewed every two years in accordance with Department for Education’s advice on statutory policies and will presented to the full governing board for approval.
This data protection policy is linked to our:
- Freedom of information policy
- Staff code of conduct
- Acceptable use of ICT/Digital technology
- Safeguarding and Child Protection
This procedure is based on guidance on personal data breaches produced by the ICO.
- On finding or causing a breach, or potential breach, the staff member or data processor must immediately notify Rob Slater, the data protection lead person in the school, who will contact the DPO.
- The DPO will assist in the investigation of the report and determine whether a breach has occurred. To decide, the DPO will consider whether personal data has been accidentally or unlawfully:
- Disclosed or made available where it should not have been
- Made available to unauthorised people
- The categories and approximate number of individuals concerned
- The categories and approximate number of personal data records concerned
- A description of the nature of the personal data breach including, where possible:
- The name and contact details of the DPO
- A description of the likely consequences of the personal data breach
- A description of the measures that have been, or will be taken, to deal with the breach and mitigate any possible adverse effects on the individual(s) concerned
- The name and contact details of the DPO
- A description of the likely consequences of the personal data breach
- A description of the measures that have been, or will be, taken to deal with the data breach and mitigate any possible adverse effects on the individual(s) concerned
- Facts and cause
- Action taken to contain it and ensure it does not happen again (such as establishing more robust processes or providing further training for individuals)
Records of all breaches will be stored on the school’s computer system, or on a designated software solution.
- In the case of a significant breach, the DPO, headteacher or designated senior leader will meet to review what happened and how it can be stopped from happening again. This meeting will happen as soon as reasonably possible.
Actions to minimise the impact of data breaches
We will take the actions set out below to mitigate the impact of different types of data breach, focusing especially on breaches involving particularly risky or sensitive information. We will review the effectiveness of these actions and amend them as necessary after any data breach.
Sensitive information being disclosed via email (including safeguarding records)
- If special category data (sensitive information) is accidentally made available via email to unauthorised individuals, the sender must attempt to recall the email as soon as they become aware of the error
- Members of staff who receive personal data sent in error must alert the sender and the data protection lead person as soon as they become aware of the error
- If the sender is unavailable or cannot recall the email for any reason, the data protection lead will ask the ICT department to recall it
- In any cases where the recall is unsuccessful, the data protection lead will contact the relevant unauthorised individuals who received the email, explain that the information was sent in error, and request that those individuals delete the information and do not share, publish, save or replicate it in any way.
- Written confirmation that the email has been deleted will be requested from all the individuals who received the data, confirming that they have complied with this request
- In the case of a serious breach, we will arrange for an internet search to be conducted to check that the information has not been made public; if it has, we will contact the publisher/website owner or administrator to request that the information is removed from their website and deleted
Other types of breach that you might want to consider could include:
- Details of pupil premium interventions for named children being published on the school website
- Non-anonymised pupil exam results or staff pay information being shared with governors
- A school laptop containing non-encrypted sensitive personal data being stolen or hacked
- The school’s cashless payment provider being hacked and parents’ financial details stolen
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