Orsett Heath Academy collects and uses personal information about staff, pupils, parents and other individuals who come into contact with the school. This information is gathered in order to enable it to provide education and other associated functions. In addition, there may be a legal requirement to collect and use information to ensure that the school complies with its statutory obligations.
Schools have a duty to be registered, as Data Controllers, with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) detailing the information held and its use. These details are then available on the ICO’s website. Schools also have a duty to issue a Fair Processing Notice to all pupils/parents, this summarises the information held on pupils, why it is held and the other parties to whom it may be passed on.
This policy is intended to ensure that personal information is dealt with correctly and securely and in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, and other related legislation. It will apply to information regardless of the way it is collected, used, recorded, stored and destroyed, and irrespective of whether it is held in paper files or electronically.
All staff involved with the collection, processing and disclosure of personal data will be aware of their duties and responsibilities by adhering to these guidelines.
What is Personal Information?
Personal information or data is defined as data which relates to a living individual who can be identified from that data, or other information held.
Why hold personal data?
The school holds this personal data and uses it to support teaching and learning, monitor and report on pupils’ progress, and provide appropriate pastoral care. This information includes contact details, national curriculum assessment results, attendance information and personal characteristics such as ethnic group, any special educational needs and relevant medical information, and may include photographic and CCTV images as appropriate.
Biometric and CCTV images
The school uses biometric data which is only processed with explicit consent of a parent or carer.
Data Protection Principles :
The Data Protection Act 1998 establishes eight enforceable principles that must be adhered to at all times:
personal data shall be processed fairly and lawfully;
personal data shall be obtained only for one or more specified and lawful purposes;
personal data shall be adequate, relevant and not excessive;
personal data shall be accurate and where necessary, kept up to date;
personal data processed for any purpose shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes;
personal data shall be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects under the Data Protection Act 1998;
personal data shall be kept secure i.e. protected by an appropriate degree of security;
personal data shall not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area, unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of data protection.
The school is committed to maintaining the above principles at all times. Therefore the school will:
inform individuals why the information is being collected when it is collected;
inform individuals when their information is shared, and why and with whom it was shared;
check the quality and the accuracy of the information it holds;
ensure that information is not retained for longer than is necessary;
ensure that when obsolete information is destroyed that it is done so appropriately and securely;
ensure that clear and robust safeguards are in place to protect personal information from loss, theft and unauthorised disclosure, irrespective of the format in which it is recorded;
share information with others only when it is legally appropriate to do so;
set out procedures to ensure compliance with the duty to respond to requests for access to personal information, known as Subject Access Requests;
ensure our staff are aware of and understand our policies and procedures.
Complaints will be dealt with in accordance with the school’s complaints procedure. Complaints relating to information handling may be referred to the Information Commissioner (the statutory regulator).
Maintaining Data Security
Maintaining data security means guaranteeing the confidentiality, integrity and availability of the personal data, defined as follows:
confidentiality means that only people who are authorised to use the data can access it;
integrity means that personal data should be accurate and suitable for the purpose for which it is processed;
availability means that authorised users should be able to access the data if they need it for authorised purposes. Personal data should therefore be stored on our central computer system instead of individual PCs.
Security procedures include:
entry controls. Any stranger seen in entry-controlled areas should be reported;
secure lockable desks and cupboards. Desks and cupboards should be kept locked if they hold confidential information of any kind. (Personal information is always considered confidential);
methods of disposal. Paper documents should be shredded. Floppy disks and CD-ROMs should be physically destroyed when they are no longer required;
equipment. Data users should ensure that individual monitors do not show confidential information to passers-by and that they log off from their PC when it is left unattended.
The school may share personal information with third parties registered as data processors with the Information Commissioner’s Office where necessary for the effective provision of a contracted engagement or service to the school, in the course of arranging educational visits and activities, including work experience and careers guidance and in accordance with the school’s safeguarding and child protection policies. The school remains the data controller and personal information will only be used for specific purposes.