Town Hall

School Improvement and Pupil Services Privacy Notice

How we use child and young person’s information

This privacy notice explains how we collect, store and use personal data about pupils. We, London Borough of Islington (Schools Improvement and Pupil Services), are the ‘data controller’ for the purposes of data protection law.

The categories of child and young person’s information that we process include:

  • personal identifiers and contacts (such as name, date of birth, unique pupil number, contact details and address)
  • characteristics (such as, gender, ethnicity, language, and free school meal eligibility, preferred learning style)
  • safeguarding information (such as court orders and professional involvement, Child in care status including Looked After or Previously Looked After, Access and Engagement, Early Help, Social Care and Health)
  • special educational needs (including the needs and ranking, for example Pastoral Support Plan (PSP), Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), SEND Support Plan, Personal Education Programme (PEP), Education and Employment,
  • attendance (such as sessions attended, number of absences, absence reasons and any previous schools attended)
  • assessment and attainment (such as the good Level of development at the end of EYFS, key stage 1, phonics, key stage 2, GCSE and A level results, post 16 courses enrolled for and any relevant results including teacher assessment)
  • behavioural and social information (such as exclusions and any relevant alternative provision placements put in place)
  • school preferences (in line with the School Admissions Code issued under Section 84 of the School Standards and Framework Act 1989)

Why we collect and use child and young person’s information

We use child and young person’s data to:

  1. enable us to carry out specific functions for which we are responsible for example: Home Education, School Admissions Appeals, undertake statutory assessments of pupils with Special Educational Needs
  2. derive statistics which inform decisions such as the funding of schools
  3. assess performance and to set targets for schools
  4. to place children in schools at normal points of entry and in year for all Islington resident children and young people of compulsory school age
  5. to ensure that Children Missing in Education are identified quickly and appropriately
  6. support the delivery of Educational Psychology Service to provide independent professional advice to children and young people, families and settings (pre-schools, schools and colleges)
  7. share with health professionals to support the health and wellbeing of your child.

Our legal basis for using this data

Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018, the legal basis / bases we rely on for processing personal information for general purposes are:

  • We need to comply with a legal obligation
  • We need it to perform an official task in the public interest
  • for the purposes of preventive or occupational medicine, for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, medical diagnosis, the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services

Less commonly, we may also process pupils’ personal data in situations where:

  • We need to protect the individual’s vital interests (or someone else’s interests)

Some of the reasons listed above for collecting and using pupils’ personal data overlap, and there may be several grounds which justify our use of this data.

Collecting child and young person’s information

We collect personal information via the Common Transfer File (CTF) or secure file transfer from schools

Children and young person’s data is essential for the local authority’s operational use. Whilst the majority of personal information you provide to us is mandatory, some of it is requested on a voluntary basis. In order to comply with the data protection legislation, we will inform you at the point of collection, whether you are required to provide certain personal information to us or if you have a choice in this.

Storing child and young person’s data

Data is stored in a range of different places, including the council's network and systems such as ONE, IYSS and others. The information is kept secure and is only used for purposes identified in this privacy notice.

We retain pupil information in accordance with the law and the council's retention policy.

Who we share child and young person’s information with

We do not share information about pupils with any third party without consent unless the law and our policies allow us to do so.

Where it is legally required, or necessary (and it complies with data protection law) we may share personal information about pupils with:

  • Our local authority – to meet our legal obligations to share certain information with it, such as safeguarding concerns and exclusions
  • The Department for Education
  • The pupil’s family and representatives
  • Educators and examining bodies
  • Local Authority Securing Education Board
  • Suppliers and service providers – to enable them to provide the service we have contracted them for
  • Central and local government
  • Our auditors
  • Survey and research organisations
  • Health authorities
  • Security organisations
  • Health and social welfare organisations
  • Professional advisers and consultants
  • Police forces, courts, tribunals
  • Professional bodies

Transferring data internationally

Where we transfer personal data to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area, we will do so in accordance with data protection law.

Why we regularly share child and young person’s information

We do not share information about our children and young people with anyone without consent unless the law and our policies allow us to do so.

Education and training

We hold information about young people living in our area or attending our schools, including their education and training history. This is to support the provision of their education up to the age of 20 (and beyond this age for those with a special educational need or disability) and to allow the London Borough of Islington to comply with its obligations to encourage, enable or assist young people to participate in education and training and to track their participation in accordance with our obligations under the Education and Skills Act 2008. Under parts 1 and 2 of the Education and Skills Act 2008, education institutions and other public bodies (including the Department for Education (DfE), police, probation and health services) may pass information to us to help us to support these provisions

Youth support services

Pupils aged 13+

Once our pupils reach the age of 12, we also pass pupil information to youth support services as they have responsibilities in relation to the education or training of 13-19 year olds under section 507B of the Education Act 1996.

This enables them to provide services as follows:

  • youth support services
  • careers advisers
  • post-16 education and training providers

The information collected is limited to the child’s name, address and date of birth. However where a parent or guardian provides their consent, other information relevant to youth support services will be collected. The right of consent is transferred to the child / pupil once he/she reaches the age 16.

Data is securely transferred to the youth support service database - IYSS and is stored in the system and held in accordance with the law and the council’s retention policy. Pupil level data may be shared with services under section 17 and also to promote fulfilment of duty imposed by section 2 of Education and Skills Act 2008.

For more information about services for young people, please visit our local authority website.

Department for Education

The Department for Education (DfE) collects personal data from educational settings and local authorities via various statutory data collections. We are required to share information about our children and young people with the Department for Education (DfE) for the purpose of those data collections, under:

  • Children and Families Act 2014
  • Education Act 1996 Section 434 and 436A
  • School Standards and Framework Act 1989 - School Admissions Code Section 48 and 84
  • Children Missing in Education Statutory Guidance 2016
  • Education and Skills Act 2008

All data is transferred securely and held by DfE under a combination of software and hardware controls which meet the current government security policy framework.

For more information, please see ‘How Government uses your data’ section.

Requesting access to your personal data

Under data protection legislation, parents and pupils have the right to request access to information about them that we hold. To make a request for your personal information, or be given access to your child’s educational record go to our subject access request page. 

You also have the right to:

  • object to processing of personal data that is likely to cause, or is causing, damage or distress
  • prevent processing for the purpose of direct marketing
  • object to decisions being taken by automated means
  • in certain circumstances, have inaccurate personal data rectified, blocked, erased or destroyed; and
  • a right to seek redress, either through the ICO, or through the courts

If you have a concern or complaint about the way we are collecting or using your personal data, you should raise your concern with us in the first instance or directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office on this page.

Data Protection Queries

The council’s Data Protection Officer is Leila Ridley. You can contact her using the details below:

Head of Information Governance and Data Protection Officer

4th floor, 7 Newington Barrow Way

London N7 7EP

Or by email at infocomplaints@islington.gov.uk

How Government uses your data

The pupil data that we lawfully share with the DfE through data collections:

  • underpins school funding, which is calculated based upon the numbers of children and their characteristics in each school.
  • informs ‘short term’ education policy monitoring and school accountability and intervention (for example, school GCSE results or Pupil Progress measures).
  • supports ‘longer term’ research and monitoring of educational policy. (for example how certain subject choices go on to affect education or earnings beyond school)

Data collection requirements

To find out more about the data collection requirements placed on us by the Department for Education (for example; via the school census) go to https://www.gov.uk/education/data-collection-and-censuses-for-schools

The National Pupil Database (NPD)

Much of the data about pupils in England goes on to be held in the National Pupil Database (NPD).

The NPD is owned and managed by the Department for Education and contains information about pupils in schools in England. It provides invaluable evidence on educational performance to inform independent research, as well as studies commissioned by the Department.

It is held in electronic format for statistical purposes. This information is securely collected from a range of sources including schools, local authorities and awarding bodies.

Find out more about the NPD.

Sharing by the Department

The law allows the Department to share pupils’ personal data with certain third parties, including:

  • schools
  • local authorities
  • researchers
  • organisations connected with promoting the education or wellbeing of children in England
  • other government departments and agencies
  • organisations fighting or identifying crime

Find more information about the Department’s NPD data sharing process.

Organisations fighting or identifying crime may use their legal powers to contact DfE to request access to individual level information relevant to detecting that crime. Whilst numbers fluctuate slightly over time, DfE typically supplies data on around 600 pupils per year to the Home Office and roughly 1 per year to the Police.

Find information about which organisations the Department has provided pupil information, (and for which project) or to access a monthly breakdown of data share volumes with Home Office and the Police.

To contact DfE go to the site.

Data Protection Queries

The council’s Data Protection Officer is Leila Ridley. You can contact her using the details below:

Head of Information Governance and Data Protection Officer

4th floor, 7 Newington Barrow Way

London N7 7EP

Or by email at infocomplaints@islington.gov.uk.

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  2. Data protection: We will handle your personal information in line with the Data Protection Act 1998 and in accordance with the council’s Fair Processing Notice.