To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for what reasons her Department plans to begin collecting country of birth data on children aged two to 19 from Autumn 2016; what limitations will be placed by her Department on disclosure of such information to (a) other government departments and (b) private third parties; and whether her Department plans to change its protocols or processes for handling and disclosure of confidential information when country of birth data begins to be collected.
25 July 2016
The collection of data on the country of birth and nationality of pupils will be used to improve our understanding of the scale and impact of pupil migration on the education sector, and provide the Department with a better evidence base for future policy decision making. These new data items will provide valuable statistical information on the characteristics of these groups of children, and along with their attainment and destinations, will allow the Department to measure whether the individual pupils, or the schools they attend, face additional educational challenges.
The data will be collected solely for internal Departmental use for the analytical, statistical and research purposes described above. There are currently no plans to share the data with other government Departments and decisions on whether the Department will release any personal data to third parties are subject to a robust approval process and are based on a detailed assessment of who is requesting the data, the purpose for which it is required, the level and sensitivity of data requested and the arrangements in place to store and handle the data. Details about the process are available here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/national-pupil-database-apply-for-a-data-extract
There are currently no plans for the Department to change the existing protocols and processes for the handling and disclosure of confidential information.