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Pupils: Personal Records

Question for Department for Education

UIN 108573, tabled on 18 October 2017

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the criteria is for refusing current and former school pupils subject access requests for personal confidential data in the National Pupil Database; and what steps she is taking to ensure that criteria complies with the General Data Protection Regulation.

Answered on

26 October 2017

Under section 7 of the Data Protection Act (DPA), an individual has the right to ask an organisation to provide them with personal confidential information they hold which identifies them and, in certain circumstances, a parent can make such a request on behalf of a child.

A subject access request for personal confidential information may be refused if it falls within a statutory exemption. The Research, History and Statistics exemption (section 33(4) of the DPA), applies to personal data being processed for research, historical or statistical purposes. As the personal information that a pupil or parent has requested is held on the NPD for these purposes, it is exempt from release to the pupil or parent.

The Department is undertaking a programme of work in preparation for General Data Protection Regulation coming into effect in May 2018. This will include a review of the policies and processes associated with Subject Access Requests.