Wellsprings Primary School Privacy Notice (formerly Fair Processing Notice)
Data Protection Act
Schools, Local Education Authorities (LAs), the Department for Education (DfE), the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA), Ofsted and the Learning Skills Council (LSC) all process information on pupils in order to run the education system, and in doing so have to comply with the Data Protection Act 1998. This means, among other things, which the data held about pupils must only be used for the specific purposes allowed by that law. We wish to inform all parents about the types of data held, why that data is held, and to whom it may be passed on.
The school holds information on pupils in order to support their teaching and learning, to monitor and report on their progress, to provide appropriate pastoral care, and to assess how well the school as a whole is doing. This information includes contact details, National Curriculum assessment results, attendance information, and characteristics such as ethnic group, special educational needs and any relevant medical information. From time to time schools are required to pass on some of this data to LAs, the DfE and to agencies such as QCA and Ofsted.
The Local Authority uses information about pupils to carry out specific functions for which it is responsible, such as assessment of any special educational needs the pupil may have, pupil tracking, etc. It also uses the information to derive statistics to inform decisions on, for example, the funding of schools, to assess the performance of schools, and for target-setting purposes. The statistics are used in such a way that individual pupils are not identified from them.
The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority uses information about pupils to administer the National Curriculum test and assessments for Key Stages 1 and 2. The results of these are passed on to the DfE in order to compile statistics on trends and patterns in levels of achievement. The QCA uses the information to evaluate the effectiveness of the National Curriculum and the associated assessment arrangements and to ensure that these are continually improved.
Ofsted uses information about the progress and performance of pupils to help inspectors evaluate the work of schools, to assist schools in their self-evaluation, and as part of Ofsted’s assessment of the effectiveness of education initiatives and policy. Inspection reports do not identify individual pupils.
The Learning Skills Council uses information about pupils for statistical purposes, to evaluate and develop educational policy and to monitor the performance of the education service as a whole. The statistics (including those based on information provided by the QCA) are used in such a way that individual pupils cannot be identified from them. On occasion information may be shared with other Government Departments or Agencies strictly for statistical or research purposes only.
The Department for Education uses information about pupils for research and statistical purposes, to inform and improve education policy and to monitor the performance of the education service as a whole. The DfE will feed back to LAs and schools information about their parents for a variety of purposes that will include data checking exercises, use in self-evaluation analyses and where information is missing because it was not passed on by a previous school. The DfE will also provide Ofsted with pupil level data for use in school inspection. Pupil information may be matched with other data sources that the Department holds in order to model and monitor pupils’ educational progression, and to provide comprehensive information back to LAs and learning institutions to support their day-to-day business. The DfE may also use contact details from these sources to obtain samples for statistical surveys; these surveys may be carried out by research agencies working under contract to the Department and participation in such surveys is usually voluntary. The Department may also match data from these sources to be obtained from statistical surveys.
Pupil data may also be shared with other Government Departments and Agencies (including the Office for National Statistics) for statistical or research purposes only. In all these cases the matching will require that individualised data is used in the processing operation, but that data will not be processed in such a way that it supports measures or decisions relating to particular individuals or identifies individuals in any results. The data sharing will be approved and controlled by the Department’s Chief Statistician.
The DfE may also disclose individual pupil information to independent researchers into the educational achievements of pupils who have a legitimate need for it for their research, but each case will be determined on its merits and subject to the Department’s Chief Statistician.
Pupils, as data subjects, have certain rights under the Data Protection Act, including a general right of access to personal data held on them, with parents exercising this right on their behalf if the children are too young to do so themselves. If you wish to access the personal data held about your child, then please contact the relevant organisation in writing:
- · The school at Wellsprings Primary School, Taunton TA2 7NF
- · The LA’s Data Protection Officer at Somerset County Council, County Hall, The Crescent, Taunton TA1 4DY
- · The QCA’s Data Protection Officer at QCA, 83 Piccadilly, London W1J 8QA
- · Ofsted’s Data Protection Officer at Alexander House, 33 Kingsway, London WC2B 6ES
- · LSC’s Data Protection Officer at Cheylesmore House, Quinton Road, Coventry CV1 2WT
- · The DfE’s Data Protection Officer at Department for Education, Caxton House, Tothill Street, London SW1H 9NA
In order to fulfil their responsibilities under the Act the organisation may, before responding to this request, seek proof of the requestor’s identity and any further information required to locate the information requested.
There may be a charge levied to cover photocopying of this information. Separately from the Data Protection Act, regulations provide a pupil’s parent (regardless of the age of the pupil) with the right to view, or to have a copy of, their child’s educational record at the school. If you want to exercise this right you should write to the school.
At Wellsprings we give due regard to the rights of privacy for all our pupils and staff. As we are designated a ‘small’ school we have the right to retain materials of a sensitive nature where individual pupils may be identified.