To pursue personal interests in a stimulating environment full of creativity and innovation.
To ensure schools maintain privacy of information.
The Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014 applies to all forms of recorded information or opinion about an individual who can be identified, including photographs and emails. It establishes standards for the collection, handling and disposal of personal information and places special restrictions on ‘sensitive information’ such as:
The Health Records Act 2001 establishes standards for the collection, handling and disposal of health information including a person’s
Health information can also include access to health services and the nature of these services; however this type of information does not have to be recorded to be classified as health information.
The objectives of privacy laws are to:
Information privacy principles create rights and obligations about personal and health information; however these only apply when they do not contravene any other Act of Parliament. In most cases there will be no contradiction as the relevant action falls within one of the exceptions within the information privacy principles.
Some strategies school can implement to ensure compliance with the privacy legislation include:
Personal and health information can be disclosed for a purpose other than for which it was collected and without the person’s consent when the disclosure is:
Privacy laws recognise and permit schools collecting, using and disclosing information so that they can comply with their duty of care to students. A key element of duty of care is that the processes and procedures used are documented and records kept.
To assist decision making about a student’s needs, schools inform parents/guardians of the student’s academic progress, behaviour, educational options or special educational requirements.
Privacy laws do not restrict this use of the information, as this is the purpose for which it is collected.
Health related information can be kept confidential by the principal, or shared with:
Note 1: Counselling services are health services and records are confidential health records. Confidentiality of information disclosed during a counselling session must be maintained unless the student provides consent or the situation falls into a privacy exemption category.
Transferring student information between Victorian government schools is allowed when:
The privacy laws do not change the individual’s right to access their information that is held by a government school. The individual’s right to access remains via a request made under the Freedom of Information Act 1982.
Privacy legislation encourages organisations to be open and transparent about what personal and health information they hold about individuals. When it is appropriate schools can provide individuals with informal access to their own personal or health information. However, the person seeking access should make a request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 if records hold information: