WHO WE ARE
Thornton College is the data controller for the purposes of the relevant legislation (“Data Protection Law”); and (ii) is an Independent Day and Boarding College for girls aged 3-18 based in Milton Keynes. Thornton College is a part of the wider charitable trust “Charity For Roman Catholic Purposes Administered In Connection With The English Province Of The Community Of The Religious Of Jesus And Mary” registered with the Charity Commission under number 247358.
This Privacy Notice covers the activities of the College and the alumnae organisation known as ‘Old Thorntonians’ and the Parent Fundraising association ‘Friends of Thornton’.
The College has appointed a Data Compliance Lead, who reports to the Bursar. Together, they will endeavour to ensure that all personal data is processed in compliance with this Policy and the principles of the GDPR. Any questions about the operation of this policy or any concerns that the policy has not been followed should be referred in the first instance to the Data Compliance Lead.
WHAT THIS PRIVACY NOTICE IS FOR
This notice is intended to provide information about how the College will use (or “process”) personal data about individuals including: its staff; its current, past and prospective pupils; and their parents, carers or guardians (referred to in this policy as “parents”). Collectively, we refer to these individuals as the College’s community.
This information is provided because Data Protection Law gives individuals rights to understand how their data is used. Staff, parents and pupils are all encouraged to read this Privacy Notice and understand the College’s obligations to its entire community. This policy sits alongside our school GDPR Policy, copies of which can be requested by contacting the school administrative team or Miss Kurze-Kinton-Heap (email@example.com)
This Privacy Notice applies alongside any other information the College may provide about a particular use of personal data, for example when collecting data via an online or paper form.
This Privacy Notice also applies in addition to the College’s other relevant terms and conditions and policies, including:
Anyone who works for, or acts on behalf of, the College (including staff, volunteers, governors and service providers) should also be aware of and comply with this Privacy Notice, the College’s data protection policy for staff, which also provides further information about how personal data about those individuals will be used.
RESPONSIBILITY FOR DATA PROTECTION
The College has appointed Miss Suzanne Kurze-Kinton-Heap as Data Compliance Lead and Mrs Jane Sanders, Bursar as Data Protection Co-ordinator who will deal with all your requests and enquiries concerning the College’s uses of your personal data (see section on Your Rights below) and endeavour to ensure that all personal data is processed in compliance with this policy and Data Protection Law.
WHY THE COLLEGE NEEDS TO PROCESS PERSONAL DATA
In order to carry out its ordinary duties to staff, pupils and parents, the College needs to process a wide range of personal data about individuals (including current, past and prospective staff, pupils or parents) as part of its daily operation.
Some of this activity the College will need to carry out in order to fulfil its legal rights, duties or obligations – including those under a contract with its staff, or parents of its pupils or former pupils.
Other uses of personal data will be made in accordance with the College’s legitimate interests, or the legitimate interests of another, provided that these are not outweighed by the impact on individuals, and provided it does not involve special or sensitive types of data.
The College expects that the following uses will fall within that category of its (or its community’s) “legitimate interests”:
In addition, the College will on occasion need to process special category personal data (concerning health, ethnicity, religion, biometrics or sexual life) or criminal records information (such as when carrying out DBS checks) in accordance with rights or duties imposed on it by law, including as regards safeguarding and employment, or from time to time by explicit consent where required. These reasons will include:
TYPES OF PERSONAL DATA PROCESSED BY THE COLLEGE
This will include by way of example:
HOW THE COLLEGE COLLECTS DATA
Generally, the College receives personal data from the individual directly (including, in the case of pupils, from their parents). This may be via a form, or simply in the ordinary course of interaction or communication (including but not limited to post, email, SMS, telephone, social media, messages, website login, attendance at events, creating a profile on our websites or portals, or written notes and assessments).
However, in some cases personal data will be supplied by third parties (for example another College, or other professionals or authorities working with that individual); or collected from publicly available resources.
WHO HAS ACCESS TO PERSONAL DATA AND WHO THE COLLEGE SHARES IT WITH
Occasionally, the College will need to share personal information relating to its community with third parties, such as:
For the most part, personal data collected by the College will remain within the College, and will be processed by appropriate individuals only in accordance with access protocols (i.e. on a ‘need to know’ basis). Particularly strict rules of access apply in the context of:
However, a certain amount of any SEN pupil’s relevant information will need to be provided to staff more widely in the context of providing the necessary care and education that the pupil requires.
Staff, pupils and parents are reminded that the College is under duties imposed by law and statutory guidance (including Keeping Children Safe in Education) to record or report incidents and concerns that arise or are reported to it, in some cases regardless of whether they are proven, if they meet a certain threshold of seriousness in their nature or regularity. This is likely to include file notes on personnel or safeguarding files, and in some cases referrals to relevant authorities such as the LADO or police. For further information about this, please view the College’s Safeguarding Policy.
Finally, in accordance with Data Protection Law, some of the College’s processing activity is carried out on its behalf by third parties, such as IT systems, web developers, cloud storage providers, catering, travel and security companies. This is always subject to contractual assurances that personal data will be kept securely and only in accordance with the College’s specific directions.
HOW LONG WE KEEP PERSONAL DATA
The College will retain personal data securely and only in line with how long it is necessary to keep for a legitimate and lawful reason. For example, permission slips from trips will be destroyed upon return to school. Similarly, student work or internal assessments will be routinely returned to students or securely disposed of each year. Typically, the legal recommendation for how long to keep ordinary staff and pupil personnel files is up to 7 years following departure from the College. However, incident reports and safeguarding files will need to be kept much longer, in accordance with specific legal requirements. More detailed information is given in our GDPR Policy.
If you have any specific queries about how our retention policy is applied, or wish to request that personal data that you no longer believe to be relevant is considered for erasure, please contact our Data Compliance Lead. However, please bear in mind that the College will often have lawful and necessary reasons to hold on to some personal data even following such request.
A limited and reasonable amount of information will be kept for archiving purposes, for example; and even where you have requested we no longer keep in touch with you, we will need to keep a record of the fact in order to fulfil your wishes (called a “suppression record”).
KEEPING IN TOUCH AND SUPPORTING THE COLLEGE
The College will use the contact details of parents, alumni and other members of the College community to keep them updated about the activities of the College, or alumni and parent events of interest, including by sending updates and newsletters, by email and by post. Unless the relevant individual objects, the College will also:
Individuals have various rights under Data Protection Law to access and understand personal data about them held by the College, and in some cases ask for it to be erased or amended or have it transferred to others, or for the College to stop processing it – but subject to certain exemptions and limitations.
Any individual wishing to access or amend their personal data, or wishing it to be transferred to another person or organisation, or who has some other objection to how their personal data is used can contact any member of staff who will refer your request to the Data Compliance Lead.
The College will endeavour to respond to any such written requests as soon as is reasonably practicable and in any event within statutory time-limits (which is one month in the case of requests for access to information, but actually fulfilling more complex requests may take 1-2 months longer).
The College will be better able to respond quickly to smaller, targeted requests for information made during term time. If the request for information is manifestly excessive or similar to previous requests, the College may refuse this request, ask you to reconsider, or require a proportionate fee (but only where Data Protection Law allows it).
You should be aware that the right of access is limited to your own personal data, and certain data is exempt from the right of access. This will include information which identifies other individuals (and parents need to be aware this may include their own children, in certain limited situations – please see further below), or information which is subject to legal privilege (for example legal advice given to or sought by the College, or documents prepared in connection with a legal action).
The College is also not required to disclose any pupil examination scripts (or other information consisting solely of pupil test answers), provide examination or other test marks ahead of any ordinary publication, nor share any confidential reference given by the College itself for the purposes of the education, training or employment of any individual.
You may have heard of the “right to be forgotten”. However, we will sometimes have compelling reasons to refuse specific requests to amend, delete or stop processing your (or your child’s) personal data: for example, a legal requirement, or where it falls within a legitimate interest identified in this Privacy Notice. All such requests will be considered on their own merits.
Pupils can make subject access requests for their own personal data, provided that, in the reasonable opinion of the College, they have sufficient maturity to understand the request they are making. A pupil of any age may ask a parent or other representative to make a subject access request on his/her behalf.
Indeed, while a person with parental responsibility will generally be entitled to make a subject access request on behalf of younger pupils, the law still considers the information in question to be the child’s: for older pupils, the parent making the request may need to evidence their child’s authority for the specific request.
Pupils aged 13 and above are generally assumed to have this level of maturity, although this will depend on both the child and the personal data requested, including any relevant circumstances at home. Slightly younger children may however be sufficiently mature to have a say in this decision, depending on the child and the circumstances.
It should be clearly understood that the rules on subject access are not the sole basis on which information requests are handled. Parents may not have a statutory right to information, but they and others will often have a legitimate interest or expectation in receiving certain information about pupils without their consent. The College may consider there are lawful grounds for sharing with or without reference to that pupil.
Parents will in general receive educational and pastoral updates about their children, in accordance with the Parent Contract. Where parents are separated, the College will in most cases aim to provide the same information to each person with parental responsibility, but may need to factor in all the circumstances including the express wishes of the child.
All information requests from, on behalf of, or concerning pupils – whether made under subject access or simply as an incidental request – will therefore be considered on a case by case basis.
Where the College is relying on consent as a means to process personal data, any person may withdraw this consent at any time (subject to similar age considerations as above). Examples where we do rely on consent are publications of images in marketing material and on the website. A pupil’s name will never be shown in full. Please be aware however that the College may not be relying on consent but have another lawful reason to process the personal data in question even without your consent.
That reason will usually have been asserted under this Privacy Notice, or may otherwise exist under some form of contract or agreement with the individual (e.g. an employment or parent contract, or because a purchase of goods, services or membership of an organisation such as an alumni or parents’ association has been requested).
The rights under Data Protection Law belong to the individual to whom the data relates. However, the College will often rely on parental authority or notice for the necessary ways it processes personal data relating to pupils – for example, under the parent contract, or via a form. Parents and pupils should be aware that this is not necessarily the same as the College relying on strict consent (see section on Consent above).
Where consent is required, it may in some cases be necessary or appropriate – given the nature of the processing in question, and the pupil’s age and understanding – to seek the pupil’s consent. Parents should be aware that in such situations they may not be consulted, depending on the interests of the child, the parents’ rights at law or under their contract, and all the circumstances.
In general, the College will assume that pupils’ consent is not required for ordinary disclosure of their personal data to their parents, e.g. for the purposes of keeping parents informed about the pupil’s activities, progress and behaviour, and in the interests of the pupil’s welfare. That is unless, in the College’s opinion, there is a good reason to do otherwise.
However, where a pupil seeks to raise concerns confidentially with a member of staff and expressly withholds their agreement to their personal data being disclosed to their parents, the College may be under an obligation to maintain confidentiality unless, in the College’s opinion, there is a good reason to do otherwise; for example where the College believes disclosure will be in the best interests of the pupil or other pupils, or if required by law.
Pupils are required to respect the personal data and privacy of others, and to comply with the College’s policies, most especially the E-safety Policy and the College rules. Staff are under professional duties to do the same covered under the relevant policies.
DATA ACCURACY AND SECURITY
The College will endeavour to ensure that all personal data held in relation to an individual is as up to date and accurate as possible. Individuals must please notify the school of any significant changes to important information, such as contact details, held about them.
An individual has the right to request that any out-of-date, irrelevant or inaccurate or information about them is erased or corrected (subject to certain exemptions and limitations under Data Protection Law): please see above for details of why the College may need to process your data, of who you may contact if you disagree.
The College will take appropriate technical and organisational steps to ensure the security of personal data about individuals, including policies around use of technology and devices, and access to College buildings and systems. All staff and governors will be made aware of this policy and their duties under Data Protection Law and receive relevant training. Further details of these measures and procedures can be found in the GDPR Policy.
OLD THORNTONIANS CONNECT
Thornton College maintains a database of alumni/ friends/ supporters/ parents/ professionals in order to stay in touch with our community and keep you updated about news, events, careers initiatives and fundraising activities.
Some of our database (but not all) choose to join our online community by registering on this website and creating an online profile. In both instances (individuals with offline database records and individuals with online profiles), we collect and store personal information (or “data”) about you. We are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy and this Policy sets out what information we collect about you, where and how we use (“process”) it.
We understand the importance of keeping your personal information secure and take appropriate steps to safeguard it.
Your data is stored on a dedicated, secure cloud server hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS) in the EU and managed by our website provider, ToucanTech. Industry standard firewalls, anti-virus, encryption and back-up methods are in place, as well as strict data handling protocols.
We always ensure only authorised persons have access to your information, which means only our approved employees and contractors, and that everyone who has access is appropriately trained in data management.
If you have an online profile for this website you are responsible for keeping your login details (email and password) confidential and we ask that you do not share your password with anyone.
No data transmission over the internet can be guaranteed to be completely secure. So, whilst we strive to safeguard your information, we cannot guarantee the security of any information you provide online and you do this at your own risk.
Third parties who provide services for us, for example iSAMS, Toucan Tech, My School Portal. We select our third-party service providers with care. We provide these third parties with the information that is necessary to provide the service and we will have an agreement in place that requires them to operate with the same care over data protection as we do
Third parties if we run an event in conjunction with them. We will let you know how your data is used when you register for any event
Web hosting, email hosting, analytics and search engine providers that enable us to run our community database and improve our website and its use
Third parties in connection with restructuring or reorganisation of our operations, for example if we merge with another business. In such event, we will take steps to ensure your privacy rights will be protected by the third party
Other than this, we will not share your information with other organisations without your consent.
Please would you let us know if your contact details change. Online members can update your details directly by logging-in to the website and clicking on ‘My Settings’ under your profile. You can also update your details by contacting us at JWalker@thorntoncollege.com.
Where data can be aggregated and anonymised, our website provider (ToucanTech) might use this for research purposes without restriction. For example, they may monitor traffic patterns, site usage, response rates and data trends to help make improvement to the website software. They are entitled to do this because the resulting data will not personal identify you and will therefore no longer constitute personal data for the purposes of data protection laws.
The College will update this Privacy Notice from time to time. If we make any significant changes we will advertise this on the website or contact you directly with the information. Please check this page occasionally to make sure you are happy with any changes.
QUERIES AND COMPLAINTS
If an individual believes that the College has not complied with this policy or acted otherwise than in accordance with Data Protection Law, they should utilise the College complaints procedure and should also notify the Data Compliance Lead in the first instance. You can also make a referral to or lodge a complaint with our Bursar or the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), although the ICO recommends that steps are taken to resolve the matter with the College before involving the regulator.
If you disagree with the school’s position, whilst we would hope you would communicate with us directly, you do have the right to contact the Information Commissioners Office on:
Telephone: 0303 123 1113
Textphone: 01625 545860
Monday to Friday, 9am to 4:30pm
Information Commissioner’s Office
Reviewed and Revised June 2022