Veritau Learn

The Right of Access

Commonly known as Subject Access, this is an important right that schools must be aware of to ensure that they are complying with their obligations. This is where an individual or someone acting on their behalf can make a request to see the personal information you hold on them.

Key points to consider:

  • Requests for personal data can be made to anyone in the school, either verbally or in writing. Schools should have a procedure in place so that all employees can recognise what constitutes a Subject Access Request and know what to do should they receive one.
  • Upon receipt of a valid request, the school has one calendar month to respond with the relevant information. The school must be satisfied as to the identity of the requestor, their right to the information and if necessary clarify with the individual exactly what they are asking for. If a request is particularly voluminous or complex then there is scope to apply an extension to the timeframe.
  • Certain information may be exempt from disclosure and therefore schools must carefully consider what personal data is to be released.

When a request is considered complex or if there is uncertainty about what information should be disclosed, schools should always consult their DPO.