Admission Policy of The Divine Word NS
School Address: Marley Grange, Rathfarnham, Dublin D16FF62
School Patron: Catholic Archbishop of Dublin
This Admission Policy complies with the requirements of the Education Act 1998, the Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018 and the Equal Status Act 2000. In drafting this policy, the board of management of the school has consulted with school staff, the school patron and with parents of children attending the school.
The policy was approved by the school patron on 31/03/2020. It is published on the school’s website and will be made available in hardcopy, on request, to any person who requests it.
The relevant dates and timelines for Divine Word NS, admission process are set out in the school’s annual admission notice which is published annually on the school’s website at least one week before the commencement of the admission process for the school year concerned.
This policy must be read in conjunction with the annual admission notice for the school year concerned.
The application form for admission is published on the school’s website and will be made available in hardcopy on request to any person who requests it.
2. Characteristic spirit and general objectives of the school:
The Divine Word NS is a Catholic co-educational primary school with a Catholic ethos under the patronage of the Archbishop of Dublin.
“Catholic Ethos” in the context of a Catholic primary school means the ethos and characteristic spirit of the Roman Catholic Church, which aims at promoting:
- the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the person of the pupil, including the intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual aspects; and
- a living relationship with God and with other people; and
- a philosophy of life inspired by belief in God and in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus; and
- the formation of the pupils in the Catholic faith,
and which school provides religious education for the pupils in accordance with the doctrines, practices and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church, and/or such ethos and/or characteristic spirit as may be determined or interpreted from time to time by the Irish Episcopal Conference.
In accordance with S.15 (2) (b) of the Education Act, 1998 the Board of Management of Divine Word N.S. shall uphold, and be accountable to the patron for so upholding, the characteristic spirit of the school as determined by the cultural, educational, moral, religious, social, linguistic and spiritual values and traditions which inform and are characteristic of the objectives and conduct of the school.
The Divine Word NS strives to provide a well-ordered, caring, happy and secure atmosphere and environment where the intellectual, spiritual, physical, moral, and cultural needs of the children are identified and addressed.
The Divine Word NS encourages the involvement of parents through home/school contacts and through their involvement in the Divine Word NS Parents Association. The school will endeavour to enhance the self esteem and wellbeing of everyone in the school community; to imbue in the children respect for people and property and to encourage in them the idea of being responsible.
The Divine Word NS will promote gender equity amongst teachers and pupils and promote a caring and responsible attitude to the environment
Déanfaimid iarracht Gaeilge a labhairt.
We always aim to promote our school motto: “ Mol an óige agus tiocfaidh sí”
3. Admission Statement
The Divine Word NS will not discriminate in its admission of a student to the school on any of the following:
- the gender ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the civil status ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the family status ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the sexual orientation ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the religion ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the disability ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the ground of race of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
- the Traveller community ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned, or
- the ground that the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned has special educational needs
As per section 61 (3) of the Education Act 1998, ‘civil status ground’, ‘disability ground’, ‘discriminate’, ‘family status ground’, ‘gender ground’, ‘ground of race’, ‘religion ground’, ‘sexual orientation ground’ and ‘Traveller community ground’ shall be construed in accordance with section 3 of the Equal Status Act 2000.
Divine Word NS is a school whose objective is to provide education in an environment which promotes certain religious values and does not discriminate where it refuses to admit as a student a person who is not Catholic and it is proved that the refusal is essential to maintain the ethos of the school.
4. Categories of Special Educational Needs catered for in the school/special class
|The Divine Word NS is an all-inclusive school and accepts children with any Special needs requirements.
5. Admission of Students
This school shall admit each student seeking admission except where –
- the school is oversubscribed (please see section 6 below for further details)
- a parent of a student, when required by the principal in accordance with section 23(4) of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, fails to confirm in writing that the code of behaviour of the school is acceptable to him or her and that he or she shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure compliance with such code by the student
The Divine Word NS is a Catholic Ethos School and may refuse to admit as a student a person who is not of Catholic Ethos where it is proved that the refusal is essential to maintain the ethos of the school.
6. Oversubscription (this section must be completed by all schools including schools that do not anticipate being oversubscribed)
In the event that the school is oversubscribed, the school will, when deciding on applications for admission, apply the following selection criteria in the order listed below to those applications that are received within the timeline for receipt of applications as set out in the school’s annual admission notice:
|1. Siblings/stepsiblings* and children of the Parish of Divine Word, Marley Grange* will be allocated places in order of age (eldest first).
2. Children of the staff in the school will be allocated places in order of age (eldest first).
3. Children of Past Pupils of the Divine Word NS, up to a maximum of 25% of available places (eldest first).
4. Children living outside the catchment area of the Parish of Divine Word Marley Grange (eldest first).
*siblings refer to all siblings including step and foster siblings enrolled in the school on date of application
**map available in school office.
In the event that there are two or more students tied for a place or places in any of the selection criteria categories above (the number of applicants exceeds the number of remaining places), the following arrangements will apply:
Places will be offered in accordance with date of birth (oldest to get priority)
In the event of two or more applicants with the same date of birth there will be a draw carried out by an independent person.
7. What will not be considered or taken into account
In accordance with section 62(7) (e) of the Education Act, the school will not consider or take into account any of the following in deciding on applications for admission or when placing a student on a waiting list for admission to the school:
(a) a student’s prior attendance at a pre-school or pre-school service, including naíonraí,
(b) the payment of fees or contributions (howsoever described) to the school;
(c) a student’s academic ability, skills or aptitude;
(d) the occupation, financial status, academic ability, skills or aptitude of a student’s parents;
(e) a requirement that a student, or his or her parents, attend an interview, open day or other meeting as a condition of admission;
(f) a student’s connection to the school by virtue of a member of his or her family attending or having previously attended the school;
(other than, in the case of the school wishing to include a selection criteria based on (1) siblings of a student attending or having attended the school and/or (2) parents or grandparents of a student having attended the school.
In relation to (2) parents and grandparents having attended, a school may only apply this criteria to a maximum of 25% of the available spaces as set out in the school’s annual admission notice).
(g) the date and time on which an application for admission was received by the school,
This is subject to the application being received at any time during the period specified for receiving applications set out in the annual admission notice of the school for the school year concerned.
This is also subject to the school making offers based on existing waiting lists (up until 31st January 2025 only).
8. Decisions on applications
All decisions on applications for admission to the Divine Word NS will be based on the following:
- Our school’s admission policy
- The school’s annual admission notice
- The information provided by the applicant in the school’s official application form received during the period specified in our annual admission notice for receiving applications
Selection criteria that are not included in our school admission policy will not be used to make a decision on an application for a place in our school.
9. Notifying applicants of decisions
Applicants will be informed in writing as to the decision of the school, within the timeline outlined in the annual admissions notice.
If a student is not offered a place in our school, the reasons why they were not offered a place will be communicated in writing to the applicant, including, where applicable, details of the student’s ranking against the selection criteria and details of the student’s place on the waiting list for the school year concerned.
Applicants will be informed of the right to seek a review/right of appeal of the school’s decision (see section 18 below for further details).
10. Acceptance of an offer of a place by an applicant
In accepting an offer of admission from the Divine Word NS, you must indicate—
(i) whether or not you have accepted an offer of admission for another school or schools. If you have accepted such an offer, you must also provide details of the offer or offers concerned and
(ii) whether or not you have applied for and awaiting confirmation of an offer of admission from another school or schools, and if so, you must provide details of the other school or schools concerned.
11. Circumstances in which offers may not be made or may be withdrawn
An offer of admission may not be made or may be withdrawn by the Divine Word NS where—
- it is established that information contained in the application is false or misleading.
- an applicant fails to confirm acceptance of an offer of admission on or before the date set out in the annual admission notice of the school.
- the parent of a student, when required by the principal in accordance with section 23(4) of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, fails to confirm in writing that the code of behaviour of the school is acceptable to him or her and that he or she shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure compliance with such code by the student; or
- an applicant has failed to comply with the requirements of ‘acceptance of an offer’ as set out in section 10
12. Sharing of Data with other schools
Applicants should be aware that section 66(6) of the Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018 allows for the sharing of certain information between schools in order to facilitate the efficient admission of students.
Section 66(6) allows a school to provide a patron or another board of management with a list of the students in relation to whom—
(i) an application for admission to the school has been received,
(ii) an offer of admission to the school has been made, or
(iii) an offer of admission to the school has been accepted.
The list may include any or all of the following:
(i) the date on which an application for admission was received by the school;
(ii) the date on which an offer of admission was made by the school;
(iii) the date on which an offer of admission was accepted by an applicant;
(iv) a student’s personal details including his or her name, address, date of birth and personal public service number (within the meaning of section 262 of the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005).
13. Waiting list in the event of oversubscription
In the event of there being more applications to the school year concerned than places available, a waiting list of students whose applications for admission to the Divine Word NS were unsuccessful due to the school being oversubscribed will be compiled and will remain valid for the school year in which admission is being sought.
Placement on the waiting list of the Divine Word NS is in the order of priority assigned to the students’ applications after the school has applied the selection criteria in accordance with this admission policy.
Applicants whose applications are received after the closing date, outlined in the Annual Admission Notice, will be placed at the end of the waiting list in order of the date of receipt of the application.
Offers of any subsequent places that become available for and during the school year in relation to which admission is being sought will be made to those students on the waiting list, in accordance with the order of priority in relation to which the students have been placed on the list.
14. Late Applications
All applications for admission received after the closing date as outlined in the annual admission notice will be considered and decided upon in accordance with our school’s admissions policy, the Education Admissions to School Act 2018 and any regulations made under that Act.
Late applicants will be notified of the decision in respect of their application no later than three weeks after the date on which the school received the application. Late applicants will be offered a place if there is place available. In the event that there is no place available, the name of the applicant will be added to the waiting list as set out in Section 13.
15. Procedures for admission of students to other years and during the school year
|The procedures of the school in relation to the admission of students who are not already admitted to the school to classes or years other than the school’s intake group are as follows:
Subject to there being places available in the relevant classes:
-on basis of order of application
|The procedures of the school in relation to the admission of students who are not already admitted to the school, after the commencement of the school year in which admission is sought, are as follows:
Priority to order of applications subject to places available.
Applicants must inform the school office of their continued expression of interest in a place in the Divine Word NS by 2.30pm on the second Wednesday in June prior to the commencement of each school year for classes Snr Inf to 6th.
16. Declaration in relation to the non-charging of fees
This rule applies to all schools.
The board of the Divine Word NS or any persons acting on its behalf will not charge fees for or seek payment or contributions (howsoever described) as a condition of-
- an application for admission of a student to the school, or
- the admission or continued enrolment of a student in the school.
Note: Exceptions apply only in relation to fee charging post primary schools, the boarding element in Boarding Schools and admission to post leaving cert or further education courses run by post-primary schools.
17. Arrangements regarding students not attending religious instruction
This section must be completed by schools that provide religious instruction to students.
|The following are the school’s arrangements for students, where the parents or in the case of a student who has reached the age of 18 years, the student, who has requested that the student attend the school without attending religious instruction in the school. These arrangements will not result in a reduction in the school day of such students:
A written request should be made to the Principal of the school. A meeting will then be arranged with the parent(s) or the student, as the case may be, to discuss how the request may be accommodated by the school.
Review of decisions by the board of Management
The parent of the student, or in the case of a student who has reached the age of 18 years, the student, may request the board to review a decision to refuse admission. Such requests must be made in accordance with Section 29C of the Education Act 1998.
The timeline within which such a review must be requested and the other requirements applicable to such reviews are set out in the procedures determined by the Minister under section 29B of the Education Act 1998 which are published on the website of the Department of Education and Skills.
The board will conduct such reviews in accordance with the requirements of the procedures determined under Section 29B and with section 29C of the Education Act 1998.
Note: Where an applicant has been refused admission due to the school being oversubscribed, the applicant must request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998.
Where an applicant has been refused admission due to a reason other than the school being oversubscribed, the applicant may request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998.
Right of appeal
Under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998, the parent of the student, or in the case of a student who has reached the age of 18 years, the student, may appeal a decision of this school to refuse admission.
An appeal may be made under Section 29 (1) (c) (i) of the Education Act 1998 where the refusal to admit was due to the school being oversubscribed.
An appeal may be made under Section 29 (1) (c) (ii) of the Education Act 1998 where the refusal to admit was due a reason other than the school being oversubscribed.
Where an applicant has been refused admission due to the school being oversubscribed, the applicant must request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998. (see Review of decisions by the Board of Management)
Where an applicant has been refused admission due to a reason other than the school being oversubscribed, the applicant may request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998. (see Review of decisions by the Board of Management)
Appeals under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998 will be considered and determined by an independent appeals committee appointed by the Minister for Education and Skills.
The timeline within which such an appeal must be made and the other requirements applicable to such appeals are set out in the procedures determined by the Minister under section 29B of the Education Act 1998 which are published on the website of the Department of Education and Skills.
Healthy Eating Policy
As part of the Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) Programme, at Divine Word N.S. we encourage the children to become more aware of the need for healthy food in their lunch boxes.
To promote healthy eating habits in our school, Board of Management, Parents Association and teachers have revised our healthy eating policy.
- To promote the personal development and well-being of the child
- To promote the health of the child and provide a foundation for healthy living
- To enable the child to appreciate the importance of good nutrition for growing and developing and staying healthy
- To enable the child to accept some personal responsibility for making wise food choices and adopting a healthy, balanced diet.
We cannot stress enough the importance of the children getting a good breakfast each morning before they come to school. Lunch is an important meal for school-going children. It should be healthy, nutritious and balanced. In our school the children eat three times a day: fruit break/little break/big break. Please ensure your child has enough to drink each day. Children are advised to bring home any uneaten/unwanted food. Please keep an eye on your child’s lunchbox and adapt accordingly.
Divine Word N.S. is a NUT FREE ZONE due to allergies in the school.
We ask that children do not bring the following to school:
- Snacks known to be high in sugar, saturated fat, salt, additives and preservatives, including the following:
- Crisps (including crisp-style snacks and Pringles)
- Sugary drinks (including fizzy fruit-flavoured water, energy drinks etc)
- Nut products (including Nutella/Peanut butter/cereal bars containing nuts)
- Chocolate/chocolate bars
- Chewing gum
- Fruit winders
If such foods are brought to school, children will be asked to bring them home in their lunchboxes.
Sharp implements such as forks, knives and cocktail sticks should never be included in a child’s lunchbox.
For ideas on healthy lunches please refer to the Safe Food Website where the HSE have compiled a list of suggestions.
Friday will be our treat day. On this day, children can bring ONE of the following:
- Treat/ fun sized bar
- Treat/ fun sized bag of sweets
- Small biscuit
- Small cereal bar
- Small home bakes
Children are not encouraged to share lunches in school and should not bring in share bags or treats to share.
N.B. Parents/guardians of any child with a medical condition which requires a special diet should contact the school.
This policy was ratified by the Board of Management on 26/02/2019
Divine Word School, Marley Grange
Enrolment Applications – September 2018
Dear Parents / Guardians, 5th November 2018
You are now invited to apply for places in the school during the months of November 2018 to January 25th 2019 for New Pupils in September 2019. This applies to pupils starting in Junior Infants. Early application is advisable as places are limited.
Children new to our parish who may wish to attend other classes in the school
A small number of vacancies exist in a few classes only.
Applications for these classes will be accepted up to September 2019. (Vacancies permitting!)
|1||Application Forms||Should be filled in, at the school, during the hours:-
9.00am - 12.00pm any school day.
OR online download from our website www.divinewordns.ie
NEW FAMILIES APPLYING: If living in Catchment Area, Proof of Address required i.e.: TWO ORIGINAL utility bills in parent’s name (first and surname) dated within the previous 3 months.
(Mobile Phone Bills not acceptable)
Spot checks/visits may be made by the school to verify proof of residence in the Catchment Area.
|2||Birth Certificate||Each application must be accompanied by a Birth Certificate.
|3||Stamped, Self Addressed Envelope||Please bring along a stamped self-addressed envelope (4” x 8” please) to facilitate confirmation of successful applications.|
Some of your neighbours may wish to enrol their children in the school but may not receive this notice. Please do them and us a good turn by bringing the contents of this notice to their attention.
There is no need for existing pupils to re-enrol.
In view of the anticipated demands, we shall not be able to assure you of acceptance until all the applications have been received. Priority is given to children of the Parish and brothers and sisters of those already attending the school. Then places will be allocated to children according to age and catchment area.
Closing date and time for applications is 2.00pm on 25th JANUARY 2019. Applications forms received after this time and date will be considered as late applications. Please see our enrolment Policy on the school website www.divinewordns.ie (Click on Board of Management).
In light of the recent Admissions Bill our Enrolment Policy is under review by the Board of Management and will soon be available on the school website. However, the following are the Categories for enrolment in the school:-
|Category 1:||Siblings of current children in Divine Word NS and children of current staff.|
|Category 2:||Children in the catchment area.|
|Category 3:||Children of Past Pupils not in catchment area.|
|Category 4:||Children from outside the catchment area.|
All Categories will be in Date of Birth order.
First offers will be sent out at the end of February/ early March. Should your initial application not be successful, we will keep it on our files and every effort will be made to find a place for your child in our school.
With all good wishes.
Divine Word NS
Data Protection Privacy Statement for Parents, Guardians and Pupils
Effective from the 25th May, 2018
Individuals have a number of rights in relation to their personal information – i.e. personal data – and these rights have been enhanced by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This Data Protection Statement describes how we at The Divine Word NS collect and process personal data, in accordance with the GDPR and the school’s legal obligations generally in relation to the provision of education. Processing is the legal term used to describe various acts including – the collection, recording, organisation, structuring, storage, alteration, use of, retrieval, disclosure or transmission of information.
This Statement applies to pupils, parents and guardians. By enrolling your child in and/or by attending The Divine Word NS you acknowledge and agree to the collection and processing of personal information by the school.
For your information this Statement outlines:
- Who we are and how to contact us;
- What information we collect, process and retain;
- How information is collected and processed and the purpose and legal basis for so doing;
- Sharing information with third parties;
- Individual legal rights.
- WHO WE ARE AND HOW TO CONTACT US
The Divine Word NS is a data controller responsible for personal data – i.e. information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person. The Divine Word NS processes personal data, i.e. the school collects, records, stores, retains and uses personal data.The Divine Word NS will respond to your questions in relation to this data protection statement and our approach to privacy.
If you have any questions about this data protection statement, including any request to exercise your legal rights, please contact us using the details below:
Written request to: The Chairperson,
Board of Management.
Divine Word NS
- INFORMATION COLLECTED
The Divine Word NS may collect the following personal information on pupils and parents/guardians:
- Pupil Information
- Personal details such as name, address, date of birth, gender, PPS number, nationality, emergency contact information and information in relation to the pupil’s family as may be required,
- Any Special Education Needs (SEN),
- Any Child Protection information,
- Academic records, school reports, pupil learning needs, pupil behaviour needs, permission for access to educational reports, individual education and learning support plans,
- Personal pupil profiles (including whether English is the pupil’s first language or if exempt from any subjects e.g. Irish or religion),
- Psychological referral/assessment documentation and permission for access to psychological reports,
- Information for the Primary Online Database (POD),
- Information for Special Educational Needs Organiser (SENO),
- Information for TUSLA (the Child and Family Agency) and/or the Health Service Executive (HSE),
- Attendance records and explanatory notes in relation to absences,
- Disciplinary records including notes that may be held by the teacher(s), incident and accident reports, investigations and sanctions if imposed,
- Permission notes in respect of school activities e.g. school tours/trips and outings, extra-curricular activities, (including Curricular, RSE/Stay Safe Programme(s)),
- Photographs and recorded images of pupil(s) (including at school events),
- Acceptance Use Policy data
- Sensitive Personal Information – Pupils
The Divine Word NS may collect and process the following special categories of more sensitive personal information such as:
- Information about pupil’s health, medical certificates, medical needs, allergies and consent for administration of medicine,
- Religious belief and confirmation of engagement or not in Religious Sacraments,
- Membership of the Traveller Community,
- Racial or Ethnic origin.
- Parent / Guardian Information
The Divine Word NS may collect and process the following personal information from parents/guardians such as:
- Contact details of parent / guardian e.g. name, address, email address, telephone number(s)
- Information regarding legal orders in respect of any family law disputes in respect of guardianship, custody or access,
- Occupation and nationality,
- Number of children, position of pupil(s) in family,
- Consent in respect of medical/other emergencies,
- Consent in respect of school activities e.g. school tours/trips and outings, extra-curricular activities,
- Consent to publish photographs and schoolwork of pupils on school website / print media etc,
- Records, correspondence or notes arising from interaction with Parents / Guardians,
- Information in relation to Garda vetting applications
- PURPOSE & LEGAL BASIS FOR COLLECTING & PROCESSING INFORMATION
The Divine Word NS collects and processes personal information (as listed above) about pupils and parents / guardians for a variety of purposes and relies on a number of legal grounds to do so. The Divine Word NS requires this information to perform our duties and responsibilities and to comply with our legal and statutory obligations. In addition, The Divine Word NS requires this personal information to pursue the legitimate interests of the school and our dealings with relevant third parties (see below). The legitimate interests upon which we rely is the effective operation and management of The Divine Word NS and managing the education and welfare needs of our pupils. The Divine Word NS processes personal data on the basis of the following lawful purposes:
- Legal Obligation
The Divine Word NS collects and process personal information to comply with our legal and statutory obligations, including, but not limited to those under the Education Act 1998 (as Amended), the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, the Education for Persons with Special Needs (EPSEN) Act 2004, the Health Act 1947, the Children First Act 2015, the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, the Teaching Council Acts 2001-2015 and Safety Health and Welfare at Work legislation
- Legitimate Interests
The Divine Word NS may also process personal information to:
- Enable Pupils to develop to their full potential and meet the educational, social, physical and emotional requirements of the pupil,
- Enable Parents and Guardians to be contacted in the case of emergency, school closures and to inform Parents and Guardians of their child’s educational progress,
- Secure and benefit from the support and services of relevant third parties.
The Divine Word NS sometimes process some of pupils’ personal information with consent e.g. photograph which may be displayed on the school’s website or on social media platforms or in the print media. Please note that consent can be withdrawn at any time by contacting the school.
- HOW PERSONAL INFORMATION IS COLLECTED
The Divine Word NS collects personal information about pupils through the enrolment process and/or through expressions of interest in relation to enrolment. Additional information is collected from third parties, including former schools and through school activities and general interaction(s) during the course of the pupil’s time at The Divine Word NS
- Parents and Guardians
The Divine Word NS collect personal information about parents and guardians through the enrolment process or expressions of interest for enrolment. We collect additional personal information through general interaction during the course of the pupil’s time at the Divine Word NS
- INFORMATION AND THIRD PARTIES
The Divine Word NS may receive from, share and/or transfer information to a range of third parties such as the following:
- The Department of Education and Skills
- TUSLA / the Child and Family Agency
- The National Council for Special Education
- National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS)
- Department of Social Protection and/or other state benefit providers
- An Garda Síochána
- School Insurance Provider
- Third Party Service Providers: We may share personal information with third party service providers that perform services and functions at our direction and on our behalf such as our accountants, IT service providers including, printers, lawyers and other advisors, and providers of security and administrative services, including data processing / cloud storage service providers e.g. Aladdin, GDK Computer services, EMS Photocopiers
- DATA RETENTION
We will only retain personal information for as long as it is necessary to fulfil the purposes the information was collected for, including any legal, accounting or reporting requirements.
- TRANSFER OF PERSONAL INFORMATION OUTSIDE THE EUROPEAN UNION
The Divine Word NS may transfer the personal information we collect to countries outside the EU. Where there is no adequacy decision by the European Commission in respect of any such country that means that that country is deemed not to provide an adequate level of protection for your data. However, to ensure personal information does receive an adequate level of protection we will in such circumstances put in place appropriate measures such as the use of model contractual clauses as approved by the European Commission to ensure personal information is treated by those third parties in ways that are consistent with respect to EU and Irish Laws on Data Protection.
- INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS
Individuals have several rights under GDPR which in certain circumstances are limited and/or constrained. These individual rights include the right – free of charge and subject to any limitations as may apply – to:
- Request a copy of the personal information held about the individual;
- Rectify any inaccurate personal data held about the individual;
- Erase personal information held about the individual;
- Restrict the processing of individual personal information;
- Object to the use of individual personal information for our legitimate interests;
- Receive individual personal information in a structured commonly used and machine-readable format and to have that data transmitted to another data controller.
If you wish to exercise any of these rights please contact us at the school by writing to:
Board of Management
Divine Word NS
The Divine Word NS will endeavour to respond to your request within a month. If we are unable to deal with your request within a month we may extend this period by a further two months and we will explain why.
You also have the right to lodge a complaint to the office of the Data Protection Commission.
We will update this data protection statement from time to time. Any updates will be made available and, where appropriate notified to you.
Divine Word NS
Data Protection Policy
The school’s Data Protection Policy applies to the personal data held by the school which is protected by the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 and GDPR 2018
The policy applies to all school staff, the board of management, parents/guardians, students and others (including prospective or potential students and their parents/guardians and applicants for staff positions within the school) insofar as the measures under the policy relate to them. Data will be stored securely, so that confidential information is protected in compliance with relevant legislation. This policy sets out the manner in which personal data and sensitive personal data will be protected by the school.
Data Protection Principles
The school is a data controller of personal data relating to its past, present and future staff, students, parents/guardians and other members of the school community. As such, the school is obliged to comply with the principles of data protection set out in the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 and GDPR 2018 which can be summarised as follows:
- Obtain and process Personal Data fairly: Information on students is gathered with the help of parents/guardians and staff. Information is also transferred from their previous schools. In relation to information the school holds on other individuals (members of staff, individuals applying for positions within the School, parents/guardians of students etc.), the information is generally furnished by the individuals themselves with full and informed consent and compiled during the course of their employment or contact with the School. All such data is treated in accordance with the Data Protection Acts and the terms of this Data Protection Policy. The information will be obtained and processed fairly. Under Data Protection legislation, parents/guardians have the right to object to the processing of their child’s personal data, if they feel that the data is not being processed in a fair manner or used for a valid reason. They also have the right to block certain uses of the data and correct errors, in the event that they identify any errors in this data held about their child.
- Keep it only for one or more specified and explicit lawful purposes: The School will inform individuals of the reasons they collect their data and will inform individuals of the uses to which their data will be put. All information is kept with the best interest of the individual in mind at all times.
- Process it only in ways compatible with the purposes for which it was given initially: Data relating to individuals will only be processed in a manner consistent with the purposes for which it was gathered. Information will only be disclosed on a need to know basis, and access to it will be strictly controlled.
- Keep Personal Data safe and secure: Only those with a genuine reason for doing so may gain access to the information. Sensitive Personal Data is securely stored under lock and key in the case of manual records and protected with firewall software and password protection in the case of electronically stored data. Portable devices storing personal data (such as laptops) should be encrypted and password protected before they are removed from the school premises. Confidential information will be stored securely and in relevant circumstances, it will be placed in a separate file which can easily be removed if access to general records is granted to anyone not entitled to see the confidential data.
- Keep Personal Data accurate, complete and up-to-date: Students, parents/guardians, and/or staff should inform the school of any change which the school should make to their personal data and/or sensitive personal data to ensure that the individual’s data is accurate, complete and up-to-date. Once informed, the school will make all necessary changes to the relevant records. The principal may delegate such updates/amendments to another member of staff. However, records must not be altered or destroyed without proper authorisation. If alteration/correction is required, then a note of the fact of such authorisation and the alteration(s) to be made to any original record/documentation should be dated and signed by the person making that change.
- Ensure that it is adequate, relevant and not excessive: Only the necessary amount of information required to provide an adequate service will be gathered and stored.
- Retain it no longer than is necessary for the specified purpose or purposes for which it was given: As a general rule, the information will be kept for the duration of the individual’s time in the school. Thereafter, the school will comply with DES guidelines on the storage of Personal Data and Sensitive Personal Data relating to a student. In the case of members of staff, the school will comply with both DES guidelines and the requirements of the Revenue Commissioners with regard to the retention of records relating to employees. The school may also retain the data relating to an individual for a longer length of time for the purposes of complying with relevant provisions of law and or/defending a claim under employment legislation and/or contract and/or civil law.
- Provide a copy of their personal data to any individual, on request: Individuals have a right to know what personal data/sensitive personal data is held about them, by whom, and the purpose for which it is held. A copy of an individual’s data held on POD can be obtained upon turning 18 or prior to that by his/her parent/guardian, in line with Section 4 of the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003, by contacting in writing the school in which the pupil is currently enrolled. In addition, any individual, upon turning 18 or prior to that through their parents/guardians, also have the right to request a copy of their details currently held on POD within the Department of Education and Skills. This request should be made in writing to Records Management Section, Department of Education and Skills, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1. The Department will require proof of identity to be furnished before releasing any information in relation to an individual pupil. No additional variables are available to the Department on POD than are available at the school level, and therefore requests for POD data should in the first instance be made to the school.
Purpose of the Policy: The Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 apply to the keeping and processing of Personal Data, both in manual and electronic form. The purpose of this policy is to assist the school to meet its statutory obligations, to explain those obligations to School staff, and to inform staff, students and their parents/guardians how their data will be treated.
The policy applies to all school staff, the board of management, parents/guardians, students and others (including prospective or potential students and their parents/guardians, and applicants for staff positions within the school) insofar as the school handles or processes their Personal Data in the course of their dealings with the school.
Definition of Data Protection Terms
In order to properly understand the school’s obligations, there are some key terms which should be understood by all relevant school staff:
Data means information in a form that can be processed. It includes both automated data (e.g. electronic data) and manual data. Automated data means any information on computer, or information recorded with the intention that it be processed by computer. Manual data means information that is kept/recorded as part of a relevant filing system or with the intention that it form part of a relevant filing system.
Relevant filing system means any set of information that, while not computerised, is structured by reference to individuals or by reference to criteria relating to individuals, so that specific information relating to a particular individual is readily, quickly and easily accessible.
Personal Data means data relating to a living individual who is or can be identified either from the data or from the data in conjunction with other information that is in, or is likely to come into, the possession of the Data Controller i.e. the school.
Sensitive Personal Data refers to Personal Data regarding a person’s
- racial or ethnic origin, political opinions or religious or philosophical beliefs
- membership of a trade union
- physical or mental health or condition or sexual life
- commission or alleged commission of any offence or
- any proceedings for an offence committed or alleged to have been committed by the person, the disposal of such proceedings or the sentence of any court in such proceedings, criminal convictions or the alleged commission of an offence.
Data Controller for the purpose of this policy is the board of management, Divine Word NS.
In addition to its legal obligations under the broad remit of educational legislation, the school has a legal responsibility to comply with the Data Protection Acts, 1988 and 2003.
This policy explains what sort of data is collected, why it is collected, for how long it will be stored and with whom it will be shared. As more and more data is generated electronically and as technological advances enable the easy distribution and retention of this data, the challenge of meeting the school’s legal responsibilities has increased.
The school takes its responsibilities under data protection law very seriously and wishes to put in place safe practices to safeguard individual’s personal data. It is also recognised that recording factual information accurately and storing it safely facilitates an evaluation of the information, enabling the principal and board of management to make decisions in respect of the efficient running of the School. The efficient handling of data is also essential to ensure that there is consistency and continuity where there are changes of personnel within the school and board of management.
Other Legal Obligations
Implementation of this policy takes into account the school’s other legal obligations and responsibilities. Some of these are directly relevant to data protection. For example:
- Under Section 9(g) of the Education Act, 1998, the parents of a student, or a student who has reached the age of 18 years, must be given access to records kept by the school relating to the progress of the student in their education
- Under Section 20 of the Education (Welfare) Act, 2000, the school must maintain a register of all students attending the School
- Under section 20(5) of the Education (Welfare) Act, 2000, a principal is obliged to notify certain information relating to the child’s attendance in school and other matters relating to the child’s educational progress to the principal of another school to which a student is transferring
- Under Section 21 of the Education (Welfare) Act, 2000, the school must record the attendance or non-attendance of students registered at the school on each school day
- Under Section 28 of the Education (Welfare) Act, 2000, the School may supply Personal Data kept by it to certain prescribed bodies (the Department of Education and Skills, the National Education Welfare Board, the National Council for Special Education, other schools, other centres of education) provided the School is satisfied that it will be used for a “relevant purpose” (which includes recording a person’s educational or training history or monitoring their educational or training progress in order to ascertain how best they may be assisted in availing of educational or training opportunities or in developing their educational potential; or for carrying out research into examinations, participation in education and the general effectiveness of education or training)
- Under Section 14 of the Education for Persons with Special Educational Needs Act, 2004, the school is required to furnish to the National Council for Special Education (and its employees, which would include Special Educational Needs Organisers (“SENOs”)) such information as the Council may from time to time reasonably request
- The Freedom of Information Act 1997 provides a qualified right to access to information held by public bodies which does not necessarily have to be “personal data” as with data protection legislation. While schools are not currently subject to freedom of information legislation, if a school has furnished information to a body covered by the Freedom of Information Act (such as the Department of Education and Skills, etc.) these records could be disclosed if a request is made to that body
- Under Section 26(4) of the Health Act, 1947 a School shall cause all reasonable facilities (including facilities for obtaining names and addresses of pupils attending the school) to be given to a health authority who has served a notice on it of medical inspection, e.g. a dental inspection,Sight and Hearing Tests
- Under Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children (2017) published by the Department of Children & Youth Affairs,Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 schools, their boards of management and their staff have responsibilities to report child abuse or neglect to TUSLA – Child and Family Agency (or in the event of an emergency and the unavailability of TUSLA, to An Garda Síochána).
Relationship to characteristic spirit of the School (School’s mission/vision/aims)
The Divine Word NS is a Catholic Ethos School which serves the community of Marley Grange. In order to enable each child to reach his/her potential The Divine Word NS seeks to:
- create a caring and co-operative environment where tolerance and respect are nurtured
- build confidence and encourage a good work ethic
- promote trust-worthiness
- develop socially well-adjusted and independent individuals
- recognise and meet the individual needs of each child
The achievement of this depends on mutual co-operation and team work between children, parents, teachers and management.
We aim to achieve these goals while respecting the privacy and data protection rights of students, staff, parents/guardians and others who interact with us. The school wishes to achieve these aims/missions while fully respecting individuals’ rights to privacy and rights under the Data Protection Acts.
The Personal Data records held by the school may include:
- Staff records:
- Categories of staff data: As well as existing members of staff (and former members of staff), these records may also relate to applicants applying for positions within the school, trainee teachers and teachers under probation. These staff records may include:
- Name, address and contact details, PPS number
- Original records of application and appointment to promotion posts
- Details of approved absences (career breaks, parental leave, study leave etc.)
- Details of work record (qualifications, classes taught, subjects etc.)
- Details of any accidents/injuries sustained on school property or in connection with the staff member carrying out their school duties
- Records of any reports the school (or its employees) have made in respect of the staff member to State departments and/or other agencies under mandatory reporting legislation and/or child-safeguarding guidelines (subject to the DES Child Protection Procedures).
- Purposes: Staff records are kept for the purposes of:
- the management and administration of school business (now and in the future)
- to facilitate the payment of staff, and calculate other benefits/ entitlements (including reckonable service for the purpose of calculation of pension payments, entitlements and/or redundancy payments where relevant)
- to facilitate pension payments in the future
- human resources management
- recording promotions made (documentation relating to promotions applied for) and changes in responsibilities etc.
- to enable the school to comply with its obligations as an employer including the preservation of a safe, efficient working and teaching environment (including complying with its responsibilities under the Safety, Health and Welfare At Work Act. 2005)
- to enable the school to comply with requirements set down by the Department of Education and Skills, the Revenue Commissioners, the National Council for Special Education, TUSLA, the HSE, and any other governmental, statutory and/or regulatory departments and/or agencies
- and for compliance with legislation relevant to the school.
- Location: In a secure, locked filing cabinet that only personnel who are authorised to use the data can access. Employees are required to maintain the confidentiality of any data to which they have access.
- Security: Staff records are kept in manual record format and are stored in a secure locked filing cabinet.
- Student records:
- Categories of student data: These may include:
- Information which may be sought and recorded at enrolment and may be collated and compiled during the course of the student’s time in the school. These records may include:
- name, address and contact details, PPS number
- date and place of birth
- names and addresses of parents/guardians and their contact details (including any special arrangements with regard to guardianship, custody or access)
- religious belief
- racial or ethnic origin
- membership of the Traveller community, where relevant
- whether English is the student’s first language and/or whether the student requires English language support
- any relevant special conditions (e.g. special educational needs, health issues etc.) which may apply
- Information on previous academic record (including reports, references, assessments and other records from any previous school(s) attended by the student
- Psychological, psychiatric and/or medical assessments
- Attendance records
- Photographs and recorded images of students (including at school events and noting achievements).
- Academic record
- Records of significant achievements
- Whether the student is exempt from studying Irish
- Records of disciplinary issues/investigations and/or sanctions imposed
- Other records e.g. records of any serious injuries/accidents etc. (Note: it is advisable to inform parents that a particular incident is being recorded).
- Records of any reports the school (or its employees) have made in respect of the student to State departments and/or other agencies under mandatory reporting legislation and/or child safeguarding guidelines (subject to the DES Child Protection Procedures).
- Purposes: The purposes for keeping student records are:
- to enable each student to develop to their full potential
- to comply with legislative or administrative requirements
- to ensure that eligible students can benefit from the relevant additional teaching or financial supports
- to support the provision of religious instruction
- to enable parents/guardians to be contacted in the case of emergency or in the case of school closure, or to inform parents of their child’s educational progress or to inform parents of school events etc.
- to meet the educational, social, physical and emotional requirements of the student
- photographs and recorded images of students are taken to celebrate school achievements, compile yearbooks, establish a school website, record school events, and to keep a record of the history of the school. Such records are taken and used in accordance with the school’s permission letters and permission on school application forms
- to ensure that the student meets the school’s admission criteria
- to ensure that students meet the minimum age requirements for their course
- to ensure that any student seeking an exemption from Irish meets the criteria in order to obtain such an exemption from the authorities
- to furnish documentation/ information about the student to the Department of Education and Skills, the National Council for Special Education, TUSLA, and other Schools etc. in compliance with law and directions issued by government departments
- Location: In a secure, locked filing cabinet that only personnel who are authorised to use the data can access. Employees are required to maintain the confidentiality of any data to which they have access.
- Security: Students records are kept both in manual and computer format. Manual records are stored in a locked filing cabinet. Computer records are password protected and encrypted.
- Board of management records:
- Categories of board of management data: These may include:
- Name, address and contact details of each member of the board of management (including former members of the board of management)
- Records in relation to appointments to the Board
- Minutes of Board of Management meetings and correspondence to the Board which may include references to particular individuals.
- Purposes: To enable the Board of Management to operate in accordance with the Education Act 1998 and other applicable legislation and to maintain a record of board appointments and decisions.
- Location: In a secure, locked filing cabinet and that only personnel who are authorised to use the data can access it. Employees are required to maintain the confidentiality of any data to which they have access.
- Security: Board of Management records are kept in both manual and computer format. Manual records are stored in a locked filing cabinet. Computer records are password protected and encrypted.
- Other records:
Some examples of the type of other records which the school will hold are set out below (this list is not exhaustive):
- Categories of data: the school may hold some or all of the following information about creditors (some of whom are self-employed individuals):
- contact details
- PPS number
- tax details
- bank details and
- amount paid.
(b) Purposes: This information is required for routine management and administration of the school’s financial affairs, including the payment of invoices, the compiling of annual financial accounts and complying with audits and investigations by the Revenue Commissioners.
- Location: In a secure, locked filing cabinet that only personnel who are authorised to use the data can access. Employees are required to maintain the confidentiality of any data to which they have access.
- Security: These manual records are stored in a locked filing cabinet.
|Links to other policies and to curriculum delivery|
Our school policies need to be consistent with one another, within the framework of the overall School Plan. Relevant school policies already in place or being developed or reviewed, shall be examined with reference to the data protection policy and any implications which it has for them shall be addressed.
The following policies may be among those considered:
- Child Protection Policy
- Anti-Bullying Policy
- Code of Behaviour
- Mobile Phone Code
- Admissions/Enrolment Policy
- Substance Use Policy
- ICT Acceptable Usage Policy
- SPHE etc.
Processing in line with data subject’s rights
Data in this school will be processed in line with the data subjects’ rights.
Data subjects have a right to:
(a) Request access to any data held about them by a data controller
(b) Prevent the processing of their data for direct-marketing purposes
(c) Ask to have inaccurate data amended
(d) Prevent processing that is likely to cause damage or distress to themselves or anyone else.
Retention Period of Personal Data Collected by the Department of Education and Skills on POD
The PPSN will be retained for identification purposes on POD until the pupil’s 19th birthday. Appendix A of the Fair Processing Notice sets out the POD Retention Period for each variable collected on each student.
Dealing with a data access requests
Section 3 access request
Under Section 3 of the Data Protection Acts, an individual has the right to be informed whether the school holds data/information about them and to be given a description of the data together with details of the purposes for which their data is being kept. The individual must make this request in writing and the data controller will accede to the request within 21 days.
The right under Section 3 must be distinguished from the much broader right contained in Section 4, where individuals are entitled to a copy of their data.
Section 4 access request
Individuals are entitled to a copy of their personal data on written request.
- The individual is entitled to a copy of their personal data (subject to some exemptions and prohibitions set down in Section 5 of the Data Protection Act)
- Request must be responded to within 40 days
- Fee may apply but cannot exceed €6.35
- Where a subsequent or similar request is made soon after a request has just been dealt with, it is at the discretion of the school as data controller to comply with the second request (no time limit but reasonable interval from the date of compliance with the last access request.) This will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
- No personal data can be supplied relating to another individual unless that third party has consented to the disclosure of their data to the applicant. Data will be carefully redacted to omit references to any other individual and only where it has not been possible to redact the data to ensure that the third party is not identifiable would the school refuse to furnish the data to the applicant.
Providing information over the phone
In our school, any employee dealing with telephone enquiries should be careful about disclosing any personal information held by the school over the phone. In particular the employee should:
- Check the identity of the caller to ensure that information is only given to a person who is entitled to that information
- Suggest that the caller put their request in writing if the employee is not sure about the identity of the caller and in circumstances where the identity of the caller cannot be verified
- Refer the request to the principal for assistance in difficult situations. No employee should feel forced into disclosing personal information.
Implementation arrangements, roles and responsibilities
In our school the board of management is the data controller and the principal will be assigned the role of co-ordinating implementation of this Data Protection Policy and for ensuring that staff who handle or have access to Personal Data are familiar with their data protection responsibilities.
The following personnel have responsibility for implementing the Data Protection Policy:
Board of management: Data Controller
Principal and BOM Implementation of Policy
Teaching personnel: Awareness of responsibilities
Administrative personnel: Security, confidentiality
IT personnel: Security, encryption, confidentiality
Ratification & communication
When the Data Protection Policy has been ratified by the board of management, it becomes the school’s agreed Data Protection Policy. It should then be dated and circulated within the school community. The entire staff must be familiar with the Data Protection Policy and ready to put it into practice in accordance with the specified implementation arrangements. It is important that all concerned are made aware of any changes implied in recording information on students, staff and others in the school community.
Parents/guardians and students should be informed of the Data Protection Policy from the time of enrolment of the student e.g. by including the Data Protection Policy as part of the Enrolment Pack, by either enclosing it or incorporating it as an appendix to the enrolment form.
Monitoring the implementation of the policy
The implementation of the policy shall be monitored by the principal and a sub-committee of the board of management.
At least one annual report should be issued to the board of management to confirm that the actions/measures set down under the policy are being implemented.
Reviewing and evaluating the policy
The policy should be reviewed and evaluated at certain pre-determined times and as necessary. On-going review and evaluation should take cognisance of changing information or guidelines (e.g. from the Data Protection Commissioner, Department of Education and Skills or the NEWB), legislation and feedback from parents/guardians, students, school staff and others. The policy should be revised as necessary in the light of such review and evaluation and within the framework of school planning.
Signed: … ………………………………………………….
For and behalf of board of management