South Normanton Pre-School’s Privacy Notice
We are committed to ensuring that any personal data we hold about you and your child is protected in accordance with data protection laws and is used in line with your expectations.
This privacy notice explains what personal data we collect, why we collect it, how we use it and how we protect it.
What personal data do we collect?
we collect personal data about you and your child to provide care and learning that is tailored to meet your child’s individual needs. We also collect information in order to verify your eligibility for funded childcare as applicable.
Personal details that we collect about your child include:
- your child’s name, date of birth, address, health and medical needs, development needs, and any special educational needs
Where applicable we will obtain child protection plans from social care and health care plans from health professionals.
We will also ask for information about who has parental responsibility for your child and any court orders pertaining to your child.
Personal details that we collect about you include:
- your name, home and work address, phone numbers, emergency contact details, and family
This information will be collected from you directly in the registration form.
If you apply for up to 30 hours funded childcare, we will also collect:
- your national insurance number or unique taxpayer reference (UTR), if you’re self-employed. We may also collect information regarding benefits and family credits that you are in receipt of.
Why we collect this information and the legal basis for handling your data
We use personal data about you and your child in order to provide childcare services and fulfil the contractual arrangement you have entered into. This includes using your data to:
- contact you in case of an emergency
- to support your child’s wellbeing and development
- to manage any special educational, health or medical needs of your child whilst at [my/our] setting
- to carry out regular assessment of your child’s progress and to identify any areas of concern
- to maintain contact with you about your child’s progress and respond to any questions you may have
- to process your claim for up to 30 hours funded childcare (only where applicable)
- to keep you updated with information about our service
With your consent, we will also record your child’s activities for their individual learning record. This may include photographs and videos. You will have the opportunity to withdraw your consent at any time, for images taken by confirming so in writing.
We have a legal obligation to process safeguarding related data about your child should we have concerns about their welfare. We also have a legal obligation to transfer records and certain information about your child to the school that your child will be attending (see Transfer of Records policy).
Who we share your data with
In order for us to deliver childcare services we will also share your data as required with the following categories of recipients:
- Ofsted – during an inspection or following a complaint about our service
- the Local Authority (where you claim up to 30 hours funded childcare as applicable)
- the government’s eligibility checker (as above)
- our insurance underwriter (if applicable)
we will also share your data if:
- we are legally required to do so, for example, by law, by a court or the Charity Commission;
- to enforce or apply the terms and conditions of your contract with us
- to protect your child and other children; for example by sharing information with social care or the police;
- it is necessary to protect our/or others rights, property or safety
we will never share your data with any other organisation to use for their own purposes
How do we protect your data?
We protect unauthorised access to your personal data and prevent it from being lost, accidentally destroyed, misused, or disclosed by:
Keeping records securely and confidentially in a locked cupboard in a locked room
How long do we retain your data?
we retain your child’s personal data for up to 6 years after your child no longer uses our setting, or until our next Ofsted inspection after your child leaves our setting. Medication records and accident records are kept for longer according to legal requirements. Your child’s learning and development records are maintained by [me/us] and handed to you when your child leaves.
In some instances (child protection, or other support service referrals) we are obliged to keep your data for longer if it is necessary to comply with legal requirements (see our Children’s and Provider Records policies).
we do not make any decisions about your child based soley on automated decision-making.
Your rights with respect to your data
You have the right to:
- request access, amend or correct your/your child’s personal data
- request that we delete or stop processing your/your child’s personal data, for example where the data is no longer necessary for the purposes of processing; and
- request that we transfer your, and your child’s personal data to another person
If you wish to exercise any of these rights at any time or if you have any questions, comments or concerns about this privacy notice, or how we handle your data please contact us . If you have continue to have concerns about the way your data is handled and remain dissatisfied after raising your concern with us , you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner Office (ICO). The ICO can be contacted at Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF or ico.org.uk/
Changes to this notice
We keep this notice under regular review. You will be notified of any changes where appropriate.
It is our intention to make our setting accessible to children and families from all sections of the local community. We aim to ensure that all sections of our community have access to the setting through open, fair and clearly communicated procedures.
- We ensure that information about our setting is accessible, using simple plain English, in written and spoken form and, where appropriate, provided in different community languages and in other formats on request.
- We arrange our waiting list in birth order. In addition, our policy may take into account:
- the age of the child, with priority given to children who are eligible for the free entitlement – including eligible two year old children;
- the length of time on the waiting list;
- the vicinity of the home to the setting;
- the capacity of the setting to meet the individual needs of the child.
- We offer funded places in accordance with the Provider Agreement for Derbyshire County Council and any local conditions in place at the time.
- We offer 30 hours entitlement on the validation of an eligibility code.
- We offer full days Monday- Friday 9am-3pm (term time only) Parents must provide a suitable packed lunch for their child.
- We keep a place vacant, if this is financially viable, to accommodate an emergency admission.
- our setting and its practices are welcoming and make it clear that fathers, mothers, other relations and carers are all welcome.
- Our setting and its practices operate in a way that encourages positive regard for and understanding of difference and ability - whether gender, family structure, class, background, religion, ethnicity or competence in spoken English.
- We support children and/or parents with disabilities to take full part in all activities within our setting.
- We share and widely promote our Valuing Diversity and Promoting Equality Policy.
- We consult with families about the opening times of our setting to ensure that we accommodate a broad range of families' needs.
- We are flexible about attendance patterns to accommodate the needs of individual children and families, providing these do not disrupt the pattern of continuity in the setting that provides stability for all the children.
- Failure to comply with the terms and conditions may ultimately result in the provision of a place being withdrawn.
We believe that children benefit most from early years education and care when parents and settings work together in partnership.
Our aim is to support parents as their children's first and most important educators by involving them in their children's education and in the full life of our setting. We also aim to support parents in their own continuing education and personal development.
Some parents are less well represented in early years settings; these include fathers, parents who live apart from their children, but who still play a part in their lives, as well as working parents. In carrying out the following procedures, we will ensure that all parents are included.
When we refer to ‘parents’, we mean both mothers and fathers; these include both natural or birth parents, as well as step-parents and parents who do not live with their children, but have contact with them and play a part in their lives. ‘Parents’ also includes same sex parents, as well as foster parents.
The Children Act (1989) defines parental responsibility as 'all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which by law a parent of a child has in relation to the child and his property’.
- Parents are made to feel welcome in our setting; they are greeted appropriately,.
- We have a means to ensure all parents are included - that may mean that we have different strategies for involving fathers, or parents who work or live apart from their children.
- We make every effort to accommodate parents who have a disability or impairment.
- We consult with all parents to find out what works best for them.
- We ensure on-going dialogue with parents to improve our knowledge of the needs of their children and to support their families.
- We inform all parents about how the setting is run and its policies, through access to written information, including our Safeguarding Children and Child Protection policy and our responsibilities under the Prevent Duty, and through regular informal communication. We check to ensure parents understand the information that is given to them.
- Information about a child and his or her family is kept confidential within our setting. We provide you with a privacy notice that details how and why we process your personal information. The exception to this is where there is cause to believe that a child may be suffering, or is likely to suffer, significant harm, or where there are concerns regarding child’s development that need to be shared with another agency. We will seek parental permission unless there are reasons not to in order to protect the safety of the child. Reference is made to our Information Sharing Policy on seeking consent for disclosure.
- We seek specific parental consent to administer medication, take a child for emergency treatment, take a child on an outing and take photographs for the purposes of record keeping.
- The expectations that we make on parents are made clear at the point of registration..
- We seek parents’ views regarding changes in the delivery of our service.
- Parents are actively encouraged to participate in decision making processes according to the structure in place within our setting.
- We encourage parents to become involved in the social and cultural life of the setting and actively contribute to it.
- As far as possible our service is provided in a flexible way to meet the needs of parents without compromising the needs of children.
- We provide sufficient opportunity for parents to share necessary information with staff and this is recorded and stored to protect confidentiality.
- Our key persons meet regularly with parents to discuss their child’s progress and to share concerns if they arise.
- Where applicable, our key persons work with parents to carry out an agreed plan to support special educational needs.
- Where applicable, our key persons work with parents to carry out any agreed tasks where a Protection Plan is in place for a child.
- We involve parents in the shared record keeping about their children - either formally or informally – and ensure parents have access to their children's written developmental records.
- We provide opportunities for parents to contribute their own skills, knowledge and interests to the activities of the setting.
- We support families to be involved in activities that promote their own learning and well-being; informing parents about relevant conferences, workshops and training.
- We consult with parents about the times of meetings to avoid excluding anyone.
- We provide information about opportunities to be involved in the setting in ways that are accessible to parents with basic skills needs, or those for whom English is an additional language; making every effort to provide an interpreter for parents who speak a language other than English and to provide translated written materials.
- We welcome the contributions of parents, in whatever form these may take.
- We inform all parents of the systems for registering queries, complaints or suggestions and we check to ensure these are understood. All parents have access to our written complaints procedure.
- We provide opportunities for parents to learn about the curriculum offered in the setting and about young children's learning, in the setting and at home. There are opportunities for parents to take active roles in supporting their child’s learning in the setting: informally through helping out or taking part in activities with their child, or through structured projects engaging parents and staff in learning about children’s learning.
In compliance with the Safeguarding and Welfare Requirements, the following documentation is also in place at our setting:
- Admissions Policy.
- Complaints procedure.
- Record of complaints.
- Developmental records of children.
Transfer of records to school
We recognise that children sometimes move to another early years setting before they go on to school, although many will leave our setting to enter a nursery or reception class.
We prepare children for these transitions and involve parents and the receiving setting or school in this process. We prepare records about a child’s development and learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage in our setting; in order to enable smooth transitions, we share appropriate information with the receiving setting or school at transfer.
Confidential records are shared where there have been child protection concerns according to the process required by our Local Safeguarding Children Board.
The procedure guides this process and determines what information we can and cannot share with a receiving school or setting. Prior to transferring information, we will establish the lawful basis for doing so (see our Privacy Notice).
Transfer of development records for a child moving to another early years setting or school
- Using the Early Years Outcomes (DfE 2013) guidance and our assessment of children's development and learning, the key person will prepare a summary of achievements in the seven areas of learning and development.
- The record refers to:
- any additional language spoken by the child and his or her progress in both languages;
- any additional needs that have been identified or addressed by our setting;
- any special needs or disability, whether a CAF was raised in respect of special needs or disability, whether there is an Education, Health and Care Plan, and the name of the lead professional.
- The document may be accompanied by other evidence, such as photos or drawings that the child has made.
- When a child transfers to a school, most local authorities provide an assessment summary format or a transition record, which we will follow as applicable.
- If there have been any welfare or protection concerns, we place a star on the front of the assessment record.
Transfer of confidential information
- The receiving school or setting will need to have a record of any safeguarding or child protection concerns that were raised in our setting and what was done about them.
- Where a TAF has been raised in respect of any welfare concerns, we will pass the name and contact details of the lead professional on to the receiving setting or school.
- Where there has been a s47 investigation regarding a child protection concern, we will pass the name and contact details of the child’s social worker on to the receiving setting or school – regardless of the outcome of the investigation.
- We post or take the information to the school or setting, ensuring it is addressed to the setting or school’s designated person for child protection and marked as 'confidential’.
- We do not pass any other documentation from the child's personal file to the receiving setting or school.
Making a complaint
We believe that children and parents are entitled to expect courtesy and prompt, careful attention to their needs and wishes. We welcome suggestions on how to improve our setting and will give prompt and serious attention to any concerns about the running of the setting. We anticipate that most concerns will be resolved quickly, by an informal approach with the appropriate member of staff. If this does not achieve the desired result, we have a set of procedures for dealing with concerns. We aim to bring all concerns about the running of our setting to a satisfactory conclusion for all of the parties involved.
All settings are required to keep a written record of any complaints that reach stage two and above, and their outcome. This is to be made available to parents, as well as to Ofsted inspectors on request.
Making a complaint
- Any parent who has a concern about an aspect of our setting's provision talks over his/her concerns with our manager first of all.
- Most complaints should be resolved amicably and informally at this stage.
- We record the issue, and how it was resolved, in the child’s file.
- If this does not have a satisfactory outcome, or if the problem recurs, the parent moves to this stage of the procedure by putting the concerns or complaint in writing.
- Our setting stores all information relating to written complaints from parents in the child's personal file. However, if the complaint involves a detailed investigation, our manager may wish to store all information relating to the investigation in a separate file designated for this complaint.
- When the investigation into the complaint is completed, our manager meets with the parent to discuss the outcome.
- We inform parents of the outcome of the investigation within 28 days of him/her making the complaint.
- When the complaint is resolved at this stage, we log the summative points in our Complaint Investigation Record, which is made available to Ofsted on request.
- If the parent is not satisfied with the outcome of the investigation, he or she requests a meeting with our manager and the directors The parent may have a friend or partner present if they prefer and our manager should have the support of the management team
- An agreed written record of the discussion is made, as well as any decision or action to take as a result. All of the parties present at the meeting sign the record and receive a copy of it.
- This signed record signifies that the procedure has concluded. When the complaint is resolved at this stage, we log the summative points in our Complaint Investigation Record.
- If at the stage three meeting the parent cannot reach agreement with us, we invite an external mediator to help to settle the complaint. This person should be acceptable to both parties, listen to both sides and offer advice. A mediator has no legal powers, but can help us to define the problem, review the action so far and suggest further ways in which it might be resolved.
- the mediator keeps all discussions confidential. S/he can hold separate meetings with our staff and the parent, if this is decided to be helpful. The mediator keeps an agreed written record of any meetings that are held and of any advice s/he gives.
- When the mediator has concluded her/his investigations, a final meeting between the parent and our manager and directors is held. The purpose of this meeting is to reach a decision on the action to be taken to deal with the complaint. The mediator's advice is used to reach this conclusion. The mediator is present at the meeting if all parties think this will help a decision to be reached.
- A record of this meeting, including the decision on the action to be taken, is made. Everyone present at the meeting signs the record and receives a copy of it. This signed record signifies that the procedure has concluded.
The role of the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted), the Local
Safeguarding Children Board and the Information Commissioner’s Office
- Parents may approach Ofsted directly at any stage of this complaints procedure. In addition, where there seems to be a possible breach of the setting's registration requirements, it is essential to involve Ofsted as the registering and inspection body with a duty to ensure the Safeguarding and Welfare Requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage are adhered to.
- Parents can complain to Ofsted by telephone on in writing at:
Ofsted National Business Unit, Piccadilly Gate, Store Street, Manchester M1 2WD
Tel: 0300 123 1231
- These details are displayed on our setting's notice board.
- If a child appears to be at risk, we follow the procedures of the Local Safeguarding Children Board.
- In these cases, both the parent and our setting are informed and our manager work with Ofsted or the Local Safeguarding Children Board to ensure a proper investigation of the complaint, followed by appropriate action.
- The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) can be contacted if you have made a complaint about the way your data is being handled and remain dissatisfied after raising your concern with us. For further information about how we handle your data, please refer to the Privacy Notice given to you when you registered your child at [our/my] setting. The ICO can be contacted at Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF or ico.org.uk
- A record of complaints in relation to our setting, or the children or the adults working in our setting, is kept for at least three years; including the date, the circumstances of the complaint and how the complaint was managed.
- The outcome of all complaints is recorded in our Complaint Investigation Record, which is available for parents and Ofsted inspectors to view on request.
Working in partnership with other agencies
We work in partnership with local and national agencies to promote the well-being of all children. We will never share your data with any organisation to use for their own purposes.
- We work in partnership, or in tandem, with local and national agencies to promote the well-being of children.
- We have procedures in place for the sharing of information about children and families with other agencies. These are set out in our Privacy Notice, Information Sharing Policy, Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy and the Supporting Children with Special Educational Needs Policy.
- Information shared by other agencies with us is regarded as third party information. This is also kept in confidence and not shared without consent from that agency.
- When working in partnership with staff from other agencies, we make those individuals welcome in our setting and respect their professional roles.
- We follow the protocols for working with agencies, for example on child protection.
- We ensure that staff from other agencies do not have unsupervised access to the child they are visiting in the setting and do not have access to any other child(ren) during their visit.
- Our staff do not casually share information or seek informal advice about any named child/family.
- When necessary, we consult with and signpost to local and national agencies who offer a wealth of advice and information that help us to develop our understanding of the issues facing us and who can provide support and information for parents. For example, ethnic/cultural organisations, drug/alcohol agencies, welfare rights advisors or organisations promoting childcare and education, or adult education.
‘Sharing information is an intrinsic part of any frontline practitioners’ job when working with children and young people. The decisions about how much information to share, with whom and when, can have a profound impact on individuals’ lives. It could ensure that an individual receives the right services at the right time and prevent a need from becoming more acute and difficult to meet. At the other end of the spectrum it could be the difference between life and death.’
Information Sharing: Advice for practitioners providing safeguarding services to children, young people, parents and carers (HM Government 2015)
We recognise that parents have a right to know that the information they share with us will be regarded as confidential, as well as to be informed about the circumstances when, and the reasons why, we are obliged to share information.
We record and share information about children and their families (data subjects) in line with the six principles of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) (2018) which are further explained in our Privacy Notice that is given to parents at the point of registration The six principles state that personal data must be:
- Processed fairly, lawfully and in a transparent manner in relation to the data subject.
- Collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes and not further processed for other purposes incompatible with those purposes.
- Adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which data is processed.
- Accurate and where necessary, kept up to date.
- Kept in a form that permits identification of data subjects fo no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which the data is processed.
- Processed in a way that ensures appropriate security of the persona data including protection against accidental loss, destruction or damage, using appropriate technical or organisational measures
We are obliged to share confidential information without authorisation from the person who provided it, or to whom it relates, if it is in the public interest. That is when:
- it is to prevent a crime from being committed or to intervene where one may have been, or to prevent harm to a child or adult; or
- not sharing it could be worse than the outcome of having shared it.
The responsibility for decision-making should not rely solely on an individual, but should have the back-up of the management team. The management team provide clear guidance, policy and procedures to ensure all staff and volunteers understand their information sharing responsibilities and are able to respond in a timely, appropriate way to any safeguarding concerns.
The three critical criteria are:
- Where there is evidence that the child is suffering, or is at risk of suffering, significant harm.
- Where there is reasonable cause to believe that a child may be suffering, or is at risk of suffering, significant harm.
- To prevent significant harm arising to children and young people or adults, including the prevention, detection and prosecution of serious crime.
Our procedure is based on the GDPR principles as listed above and the seven golden rules for sharing information in the Information sharing Advice for practitioners providing safeguarding services to children, young people, parents and carers. We also follow the guidance on information sharing from the Local Safeguarding Children Board.
- Remember that the General Data Protection Regulations 2018 and human rights law are not barriers to justified information sharing as per the Children Act 1989, but provide a framework to ensure that personal information about living individuals is shared appropriately.
- Our policy and procedures on Information Sharing provide guidance to appropriate sharing of information both within the setting, as well as with external agencies.
- Be open and honest with the individual (and/or their family where appropriate) from the outset about why, what, how and with whom information will, or could be shared, and seek their consent, unless it is unsafe or if I have a legal obligation to do so. A Privacy Notice is given to parents at the point of registration to explain this further.
In our setting we ensure parents:
- Receive a copy of our Privacy Notice and information about our Information Sharing Policy when starting their child in the setting and that they sign our Registration Form to say that they understand the circumstances in which information may be shared without their consent. This will only be when it is a matter of safeguarding a child or vulnerable adult;
- have information about our Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy; and
- have information about the other circumstances when information will be shared with external agencies, for example, with regard to any special needs the child may have or transition to school.
- Seek advice from other practitioners if you are in any doubt about sharing the information concerned, without disclosing the identity of the individual where possible.
- Our staff discuss concerns about a child routinely in supervision and any actions are recorded in the child’s file.
- Our manager routinely seeks advice and support from their line manager about possible significant harm.
- Our Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy sets out the duty of all members of our staff to refer concerns to our manager or deputy, as designated person, who will contact children’s social care for advice where they have doubts or are unsure.
- Our managers seek advice if they need to share information without consent to disclose.
- Share with informed consent where appropriate and, where possible, respect the wishes of those who do not consent to share confidential information. You may still share information without consent if, in your judgement, there is good reason to do so, such as where safety may be at risk. You will need to base your judgement on the facts of the case. When you are sharing or requesting personal information from someone, be certain of the basis upon which you are doing so. Where you have consent, be mindful that an individual might not expect information to be shared.
- We base decisions to share information without consent on judgements about the facts of the case and whether there is a legal obligation.
- Our guidelines for consent are part of this procedure.
- Our manager is conversant with this and she is able to advise staff accordingly.
- Consider safety and well-being: Base your information sharing decisions on considerations of the safety and well-being of the individual and others who may be affected by their actions.
In our setting we
- record concerns and discuss these with our designated person and/or designated officer from the management team for child protection matters;
- record decisions made and the reasons why information will be shared and to whom; and
- follow the procedures for reporting concerns and record keeping as set out in our Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy.
- Necessary, proportionate, relevant, adequate, accurate, timely and secure: Ensure that the information you share is necessary for the purpose for which you are sharing it, is shared only with those individuals who need to have it, is accurate and up-to-date, is shared in a timely fashion, and is shared securely.
- Our Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy and Children's Records Policy set out how and where information should be recorded and what information should be shared with another agency when making a referral.
- Keep a record of your decision and the reasons for it – whether it is to share information or not. If you decide to share, then record what you have shared, with whom and for what purpose.
- Where information is shared, we record the reasons for doing so in the child's file; where it is decided that information is not to be shared that is recorded too.
When parents choose our setting for their child, they will share information about themselves and their families. This information is regarded as confidential. Parents have a right to be informed that we will seek their consent to share information in most cases, as well as the kinds of circumstances when we may not seek their consent, or may override their refusal to give consent. We inform them as follows:
- Our policies and procedures set out our responsibility regarding gaining consent to share information and when it may not be sought or overridden.
- We may cover this verbally when the child starts or include this in our prospectus.
- Parents sign our Registration Form at registration to confirm that they understand this.
- We ask parents to give written consent to share information about any additional needs their child may have, or to pass on child development summaries to the next provider/school.
- We give parents copies of the forms they sign.
- We consider the following questions when we assess the need to share:
- Is there a legitimate purpose to us sharing the information?
- Does the information enable the person to be identified?
- Is the information confidential?
- If the information is confidential, do we have consent to share?
- Is there a statutory duty or court order requiring us to share the information?
- If consent is refused, or there are good reasons for us not to seek consent, is there sufficient public interest for us to share information?
- If the decision is to share, are we sharing the right information in the right way?
- Have we properly recorded our decision?
- Consent must be freely given and informed - that is the person giving consent needs to understand why information will be shared, what will be shared, who will see information, the purpose of sharing it and the implications for them of sharing that information as detailed in the Privacy Notice.
- Consent may be explicit, verbally but preferably in writing, or implicit, implied if the context is such that sharing information is an intrinsic part of our service or it has been explained and agreed at the outset.
- Consent can be withdrawn at any time.
- We explain our Information Sharing Policy to parents.
- Consent to share need only be sought from one parent. Where parents are separated, this would normally be the parent with whom the child resides. Where there is a dispute, we will consider this carefully.
- Where the child is looked after, we may also need to consult the Local Authority, as ‘corporate parent’ before information is shared.
All the undertakings above are subject to our paramount commitment, which is to the safety and well-being of the child. Please also see our Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy.
Confidentiality and client access to records
‘Share with informed consent where appropriate and, where possible, respect the wishes of those who do not consent to share confidential information. You may still share information without consent if, in your judgement, there is good reason to do so, such as where safety may be at risk. You will need to base your judgement on the facts of the case.’
Information sharing: Advice for practitioners providing safeguarding services to children, young people, parents and carers (HMG 2015)
In our setting, staff and managers can be said to have a ‘confidential relationship’ with families. It is our intention to respect the privacy of children and their parents and carers, while ensuring that they access high quality early years care and education in our setting. We aim to ensure that all parents and carers can share their information in the confidence that it will only be used to enhance the welfare of their children. We have record keeping systems in place that meet legal requirements; the means that we use to store and share that information takes place within the framework of the General Data Protection Regulations (2018) and the Human Rights Act (1998).
- Most things that happen between the family, the child and the setting are confidential to our setting. In exceptional circumstances information is shared, for example with other professionals or possibly social care or the police.
- Information shared with other agencies is done in line with our Information Sharing Policy.
- We always check whether parents regard the information they share with us to be confidential or not.
- Some parents may share information about themselves with other parents as well as with our staff; we cannot be held responsible if information is shared by those parents whom the person has ‘confided’ in.
- Information shared between parents in a discussion or training group is usually bound by a shared agreement that the information is confidential to the group and not discussed outside of it. we are not responsible should that confidentiality be breached by participants.
- We inform parents when we need to record confidential information beyond the general personal information we keep (see our Children's Records Policy and Privacy Notice) - for example with regard to any injuries, concerns or changes in relation to the child or the family, any discussions with parents on sensitive matters, any records we are obliged to keep regarding action taken in respect of child protection and any contact and correspondence with external agencies in relation to their child.
- We keep all records securely (see our Children's Records Policy and Privacy Notice).
- Information is kept in a manual file, or electronically. Our staff may also use a computer to type reports, or letters. Where this is the case, the typed document is deleted from the PC and only the hard copy kept.
- Our staff discuss children’s general progress and well being together in meetings, but more sensitive information is restricted to our manager and the child’s key person, and is shared with other staff on a need to know basis.
- We do not discuss children with staff who are not involved in the child’s care, nor with other parents or anyone else outside of the setting.
- Our discussions with other professionals take place within a professional framework and not on an informal or ad-hoc basis.
- Where third parties share information about an individual us; our practitioners and managers/ check if it is confidential, both in terms of the party sharing the information and of the person whom the information concerns.
Client access to records procedures
Parents may request access to any confidential records we hold on their child and family following the procedure below:
- The parent is the ‘subject’ of the file in the case where a child is too young to give ‘informed consent’ and has a right to see information that our setting has compiled on them.
- Any request to see the child’s personal file by a parent or person with parental responsibility must be made in writing to manager.
- We acknowledge the request in writing, informing the parent that an arrangement will be made for her to see the file contents, subject to third party consent.
- Our written acknowledgement allows 40 working days for the file to be made ready.
- A fee may be charged for repeated requests, or where a request requires excessive administration to fulfil.
- Our manager informs the directors and legal advice may be sought before sharing a file
- Our manager goes through the file with the directors and go through the file and ensure that all documents have been filed correctly, that entries are in date order and that there are no missing pages. they note any information, entry or correspondence or other document which mentions a third party.
- We write to each of those individuals explaining that the subject has requested sight of the file, which contains a reference to them, stating what this is.
- They are asked to reply in writing to our manager giving or refusing consent for disclosure of that material.
- We keep copies of these letters and their replies on the child’s file.
- ‘Third parties’ include each family member noted on the file; so where there are separate entries pertaining to each parent, step parent, grandparent etc. we write to each of them to request third party consent.
- Third parties also include workers from any other agency, including children's social care and the health authority for example. Agencies will normally refuse consent to share information, preferring instead for the parent to be redirected to those agencies for a request to see their file held by that agency.
- Members of our staff should also be written to, but we reserve the right under the legislation to override a refusal for consent or to just delete the name of the staff member and not the information. We may grant refusal if the member of staff has provided information that could be considered ‘sensitive’ and the staff member may be in danger if that information is disclosed; or if that information is the basis of a police investigation. However, if the information is not sensitive, then it is not in our interest to withhold that information from a parent. In each case this should be discussed with members of staff and decisions recorded.
- When we have received all the consents/refusals our manager takes/ a photocopy of the complete file. On the copy of the file, our manager removes any information that a third party has refused consent for us to disclose and blank out any references to the third party, and any information they have added to the file, using a thick marker pen.
- The copy file is then checked by the directors and legal advisors to verify that the file has been prepared appropriately.
- What remains is the information recorded by the setting, detailing the work initiated and followed by them in relation to confidential matters. This is called the ‘clean copy’.
- We photocopy the ‘clean copy’ again and collate it for the parent to see.
- Our manager informs the parent that the file is now ready and invites him/ her to make an appointment to view it.
- Our manager and thei directors meet with the parent to go through the file, explaining the process as well as what the content of the file records about the child and the work that has been done. Only the person(s) with parental responsibility can attend that meeting, or the parent’s legal representative or interpreter.
- The parent may take a copy of the prepared file away; but, to ensure it is properly explained to and understood by the parent, we never hand it over without discussion.
- It is an offence to remove material that is controversial or to rewrite records to make them more acceptable. Our recording procedures and guidelines ensure that the material reflects an accurate and non-judgemental account of the work we have done with the family.
- If a parent feels aggrieved about any entry in the file, or the resulting outcome, then we refer the parent to our/my complaints procedure.
- The law requires that the information we hold must be held for a legitimate reason and must be accurate (see our Privacy Notice). If a parent says that the information we hold is inaccurate, then the parent has a right to request for it to be changed. However, this only pertains to factual inaccuracies. Where the disputed entry is a matter of opinion, professional judgement, or represents a different view of the matter than that held by the parent, we retain the right not to change that entry, but we can record the parent’s view of the matter. In most cases, we would have given a parent the opportunity at the time to state their side of the matter, and it would have been recorded there and then.
- If there are any controversial aspects of the content of a child’s file, we must seek legal advice. This might be where there is a court case between parents, where social care or the police may be considering legal action, or where a case has already completed and an appeal process is underway.
- We never ‘under-record’ for fear of the parent seeing, nor do we make ‘personal notes’ elsewhere.
Telephone advice regarding general queries may be made to The Information Commissioner’s Office Helpline 0303 123 1113.
All the undertakings above are subject to the paramount commitment of our setting, which is to the safety and well-being of the child. Please see also our policy on Safeguarding Children and Child Protection.
7 Provider records
We keep records and documentation for the purpose of maintaining our business.These include:
- Records pertaining to our registration.
- contractual documentation pertaining to amenities, services and goods.
- Financial records pertaining to income and expenditure.
- Risk assessments.
- Employment records of our staff including their name, home address and telephone number.
- Names, addresses and telephone numbers of anyone else who is regularly in unsupervised contact with the children.
We consider our records as confidential based on the sensitivity of information, such as with employment records. These confidential records are maintained with regard to the framework of the General Data Protection Regulations (2018), further details are given in our Privacy Notice and the Human Rights Act (1998).
This policy and procedure should be read alongside our Privacy Notice, Confidentiality and Client Access to Records Policy and Information Sharing Policy.
During the COVID-19 outbreak there may be the need to keep additional records as part of outbreak management.
A central record of all confirmed cases of COVID-19 that affect any member of staff or service user is held. This record does not contain personal details about the individual (unless for a member of staff). Records are kept of individual cases of children/families who are self-isolating due to symptoms. In all cases the principles of data protection are maintained.
- All records are the responsibility of our management team who ensure they are kept securely.
- All our records are kept in an orderly way in files and filing is kept up-to-date.
- our financial records are kept up-to-date for audit purposes.
- We maintain health and safety records; these include risk assessments, details of checks or inspections and guidance etc.
- Our Ofsted registration certificate is displayed.
- Our Public Liability insurance certificate is displayed.
- All our employment and staff records are kept securely and confidentially.
We notify Ofsted of any:
- change in the address of our premises;
- change to our premises which may affect the space available to or the quality of childcare we provide;
- change to the name and address of our registered provider, or the provider’s contact information
- change to the person managing our provision
- significant event which is likely to affect our suitability to look after children; or
- other event as detailed in the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (DfE 2017).
We have record keeping systems in place that meet legal requirements; the means [we/I] use to store and share that information takes place within the framework of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) (2018) and the Human Rights Act (1998).
This policy and procedure should be read alongside our Privacy Notice, Confidentiality and Client Access to Records Policy and [our/my] Information Sharing Policy.
If a child attends another setting, we establish a regular two-way flow of appropriate information with parents and other providers. Where appropriate, we will incorporate comments from other providers, as well as parents and/or carers into the child’s records.
We keep two kinds of records on children attending our setting:
- These include observations of children in the setting, photographs, video clips and samples of their work and summary developmental reports.
- These are usually kept on Tapestry and can be accessed, and contributed to, by our , the child and the child’s parents.
These may include the following
- Personal details – including the child’s registration form and any consent forms.
- Contractual matters – including a copy of the signed parent contract, the child’s days and times of attendance, a record of the child’s fees, any fee reminders or records of disputes about fees.
- Child’s development, health and well-being,
- Early Support – including any additional focussed intervention provided by our setting (e.g. support for behaviour, language or development that needs an SEN action plan) and records of any meetings held.
- Welfare and child protection concerns – including records of all welfare and protection concerns, and our resulting action, meetings and telephone conversations about the child, an Education, Health and Care Plan and any information regarding a Looked After Child.
- Correspondence and Reports – including a copy of the child’s 2 Year Old Progress Check (as applicable), all letters and emails to and from other agencies and any confidential reports from other agencies.
- These confidential records are stored in a lockable file or cabinet, which is always locked when not in use and which our manager secure in an office or other suitably safe place.
- We read any correspondence in relation to a child, note any actions and file it immediately
- We ensure that access to children’s files is restricted to those authorised to see them and make entries in them, this being our manager, deputy or designated person for child protection, the child’s key person, or other staff as authorised by our manager.
- We may be required to hand children’s personal files to Ofsted as part of an inspection or investigation process; we ensure that children’s personal files are not handed over to anyone else to look at.
- Parents have access, in accordance with our Privacy Notice. Confidentiality and Client Access to Records Policy, to the files and records of their own children, but do not have access to information about any other child.
- Our staff will not discuss personal information given by parents with other members of staff, except where it affects planning for the child's needs. Our staff induction programme includes an awareness of the importance of confidentiality in the role of the key person.
- We retain children’s records for six years after they have left the setting; except records that relate to an accident or child protection matter, which are kept until a child reaches the age of 21 years or 24 years respectively. These are kept in a secure place.
Archiving children’s files
- When a child leaves our setting, we place children’s records in an archive box which is stored in a safe place (i.e. a locked cabinet) for six years. After six years it is destroyed.
- Tapestry accounts are downloaded and printed out for parents when their child leaves the setting. the Tapestry account is then deleted.
- Where there were s.47 child protection investigations, we mark the envelope with a star and archive it for 25 years.
- We store financial information according to our finance procedures.
- We keep a daily record of the names of the children we are caring for, their hours of attendance and the names of their key person.
- Students on recognised qualifications and training, when they are observing in the setting, are advised of our Confidentiality and Client Access to Records Policy and are required to respect it.