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Privacy Statement

Privacy Management Plan

  1. Introduction

  2. The Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act

  3. Specific Issues Relevant to the Office

  4. Implementation the Privacy Management plan

  5. Internal Review Process

  6. Dissemination of policies and procedures

  7. Disclosure of personal Information outside NSW

1. Introduction

The Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 ( the Act)  provides the people of NSW with enforceable rights in relation to the ways in which public sector agencies collect, store, use and disclose personal information. The Office of the Board of Studies is committed to complying with the Act. Accordingly, all personal information collected now or in the future will be administered in accordance with the Act.

The purpose of this management plan is to

  • Identify personal information collected by the Office of the Board of Studies, and

  • Identify the policies and strategies that the Office of the Board of Studies will use to ensure compliance with the Act.

1.1 Context and role

The Board of Studies is a statutory body established under the Education Act 1990. The Board has responsibilities relating to both primary and secondary education. The Board develops curriculum for all schools from Kindergarten to Year 12, develops and conducts examinations leading to the award of the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate and advises the Minister for Education on applications from non Government schools seeking to operate in New South Wales.

The Office of the Board of Studies is a department established under the Public Sector Management Act 1988 to provide professional and operational support to the Board of Studies. The Office also encompasses the Australian Music Examinations Board (AMEB) and the Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG) and administers the home schooling program under delegation from the Minister for Education.

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2. The Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act

2.1  Personal Information

The Act defines personal information as:

Information or an opinion (including information or an opinion forming part of a database and whether or not recorded in a material form) about an individual whose identity is apparent or can reasonably be ascertained from the information or opinion (Section 4).

Personal information does not include.

  • Information contained in a publicly available publication

  • Information about an individual's suitability for public sector employment

  • Information about people who have been dead for more than 30 years

  • A number of exceptions relating to law enforcement investigations

  • Personal information held by the Office of the Board of Studies including:

    • Employee data.
    • Student data, in relation to candidates for the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate examinations;

    • Teaching personnel employed by registered non-government schools;

    • Applicants for home schooling; and

    • Administrative records.

2.2  Information Protection Principles (IPPs)

The Information Protection Principles are 12 general principles that are set out in sections 8 and 9 of  the Act. They set the privacy standards which the Office of the Board of Studies and all other public sector agencies are expected to follow when dealing with personal information.

The information protection principles establish standards for collecting and dealing with personal information so as to minimise the risk of misuse of that information. The principles also allow individuals to exercise a reasonable degree of control over what happens to their own personal information.

The Information Protection Principles and their intent are as follows

Principle 1 (s. 8)  Collection of personal information for lawful purposes

This principle makes it clear that all personal information must be collected for purposes which are not only lawful, but which also directly relate to a function or activity of the Office.

Principle 2 (s. 9) Collection of personal information directly from the individual

This principle is designed to limit the collection of personal information where the individual concerned is not aware that this is occurring.

Principle 3 (s. 10) Requirements when collecting personal information

This principle aims to ensure that when people are asked to provide their personal information to a public sector agency they are given enough information in order to exercise any rights that they may have under the Act.

Principle 4 (s. 11) Other requirements relating to collection of personal information

The Office must take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information collected from an individual is accurate and that the way it is collected does not unreasonably intrude on the personal affairs of the individual to whom it relates.

Principle 5 (s. 12) Retention and security of personal information

This principle sets out standards for the storage of personal information once it has been collected, including the need to comply with the provisions of the State Records Act 1998, and in particular the disposal of records. The Office's legal or administrative accountability when deciding whether to dispose of personal information must also be considered.

The level of security that may be appropriate very much depends on the nature of the personal information and the medium in which it is stored.

Section 12 places an obligation on agencies which transfer personal information to outside parties to ensure that this information is not used or disclosed inappropriately. This section will generally apply where an agency transfers personal information to an outside person or organisation for the performance of a service to the agency.

The idea behind this principle is that a person who has dealings with an agency should not lose their protection under the Act simply because their personal information is held by an organisation acting in a contractual or agency capacity to the public sector agency.

Principle 6 (s. 13) Information about personal information held by agencies

This principle is designed to alert people to the fact that an agency holds personal information. It also allows people to find out if any of the personal information held by the agency relates to them. It is an important principle in that people can properly exercise their rights under the Act only when they know which agencies hold their personal information.

Principle 7 (s. 14) Access to personal information held by agencies

This principle allows people a right of access to their personal information which may be held by public sector agencies. While the section appears to be quite straightforward it is complicated by its interaction with the Freedom of Information Act. Section 20(5) states that those provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 1989 which impose conditions or limitations on the provision of information are imported into the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act.

Principle 8 (s. 15) Alteration of personal information

Section 15 builds upon section 14 and provides a right to either amend or to attach a statement to personal information which a person believes to be incorrect or inappropriate.

Generally agencies cannot delete information contained within their records systems due to the operation of the State Records Act 1998. Section 15 of the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act allows an agency to delete information from their records system in some cases.

Section 15 is in part designed to give the subject of the data some control over personal information that may be held about them. In this regard s. 15(2) offers a person the right to have their say on the face of the record.

Principle 9 (s. 16) Agency must check accuracy of personal information before use

Section 16 places an obligation on agencies to try to ensure that all personal information used by them is relevant and accurate.

Where an agency relies on information collected by other agencies to make decisions, s. 16 would require that adequate standards for data exchange be introduced to ensure that the information means the same thing in both agencies.

Principle 10 (s. 17) Limits on use of personal information

This principle places limits on the uses an agency can make of any personal information that it collects or holds. It generally restricts use to the purpose for which the information was collected unless consent is obtained for other uses.

Agencies that breach the information protection principles are subject to internal review under the Act. Thus, if an agency plans to use personal information for a purpose not directly related to the purpose for collection it will not only need to obtain consent from the person to whom the information relates, it will also need evidence of that consent to protect itself from future action.

Principle 11 (s. 18) Limits on disclosure of personal information

This principle makes a general rule that personal information should be disclosed only for purposes directly related to the purposes for which the information was collected. This general rule then has a number of exceptions contained within the principle.

A directly related purpose is a purpose that is very closely related to the purpose for collection. This would be the type of situation that people would quite reasonably expect to occur with their personal information.

Principle 12 (s. 19) Special restrictions on disclosure of personal information

There are two distinct parts to s. 19. The first part deals with a number of categories of sensitive information, which are subject to more stringent disclosure requirements than those that apply to other kinds of personal information under s. 18.

The first part combines a recognition that these kinds of information cover areas of personal life which are not usually appropriate matters of official interest together with a concern that their disclosure could result in uses which are prejudicial to the individuals concerned.

The second part of s. 19 places restrictions on disclosure of personal information to persons or bodies outside New South Wales.

2.3  Privacy Codes of Practice

If a public sector agency believes that the information protection principles are unworkable in a particular circumstance, it can either make a Privacy Code of Practice or seek an exemption from, or modification to, the principle from the Privacy Commissioner.

Privacy Codes of Practice allow an agency to modify one or more of the information protection principles. Codes of Practice can be made in relation to one of three things:

  • A particular type of personal information (s. 29(5)(a))

  • A particular organisation or type of organisation (s. 29(5)(b))

  • For a type of activity (s. 29(5)(c))

A Privacy Code of Practice can change or delete any of the information protection principles but it cannot change or delete any of the exceptions to the principles, nor can it increase the level of privacy protection above that of the information protection principles.

2.4  Other legal requirements affecting privacy

In developing the Office's response to its obligations under the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 consideration has been given to the requirements of the following sections of the Education Act 1990 and the Education Regulation 1996 in so far as the treatment of personal information is concerned:

The Education Act 1990 at section 18 A and 102, inter alia, states

S. 18A Publication of Results of certain tests:

The Regulations may make provision for or with respect to the extent to which the results of:

  • School Certificate and Higher School Certificate examinations or other assessments, may be publicly revealed or must be kept confidential.

S.102 (Education Act 1990) Functions of the Board

  • to prepare and distribute to schools information relating to the courses of study for candidates for the recognised certificates, and information relating to eligibility to be granted those certificates;

  • to make such arrangements as may be necessary for the conduct of examinations or other forms of assessment for candidates for the recognised certificates and to regulate the conduct of those examinations or other forms of assessment and the recording of candidates' achievements in them;

  • to prepare and distribute to schools information relating to the conduct of examinations and other forms of assessment for candidates for the recognised certificates;

  • (v)special arrangements for students with disabilities, including the approval of special courses of study, the modification of requirements for the grant of the recognised certificates and the grant of special records of achievement;

The Education Regulation 1996 at clause 5, inter alia, states

5 Publication of results: section 18A

  1. This clause applies to the following results:

  2. results of School Certificate and Higher School Certificate examinations and related assessments,

  3. Results to which this clause applies must not be publicly revealed if the results relating to particular students are revealed.

  4. Results relating to a particular student may however be revealed as follows:

  5. to the student or to anyone with the student's consent,

  6. to the student's parents,

  7. to the principal of a school at which the student is enrolled or at which the student was previously enrolled,

  8. in the case of results of School Certificate or Higher School Certificate examinations and related assessments-by or with the approval of the Board of Studies, by way of the publication of the results of students who the Board considers have achieved outstanding results.

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3. Specific Issues Relevant to the Office

3.1  How does the Office deal with personal information?

The branches of the Office of the Board of Studies and their key functions and main dealings with personal information are detailed below:

Administration Branch

Administration Branch provides administrative and operational support services to assist management and staff in their service to the Office's clients. The branch consists of two units:

Operations Unit . services provided include records management, mail, switchboard/reception, motor vehicle fleet management, lease and fit-out services, building management, purchasing and travel services.

Human Resources Unit . provides services in recruitment, staff entitlements, workers compensation, training, job evaluation, personnel policy development and offers support and advice to staff regarding human resource issues, such as transfers and career development.

Assessment Branch

Assessment Branch coordinates the development and production of all Higher School Certificate examinations, School Certificate Test papers and Course Performance Descriptors. The branch provides technical and professional support to the Board on assessment, reporting and credentialling issues and liaises with national and international bodies on assessment matters. The branch develops support material and provides advice to schools and the public on assessment and reporting in all Key Learning Areas K-12. The branch monitors the awards by schools of grades for School Certificate courses and manages the appointment of members to the Board's examination committees.

Curriculum branch

This branch is responsible for the development of syllabuses and support materials for all Key Learning Areas, Kindergarten to Year 12.

Curriculum Branch is also responsible for the registration and accreditation of non-government schools. It employs Authorised Persons to carry out on behalf of the Minister the function of considering applications for home schooling.

The Board's ten Inspectors are located in Curriculum Branch. A list of their names and Key Learning Area responsibilities is included in the Appendices. The Inspectors and their teams provide leadership in curriculum through working with Curriculum Committees; managing project teams for curriculum development; presentations at conferences; responding to inquiries; developing papers for the Board; and liaising with all educational institutions both within NSW and nationally. They are involved in addressing meetings of teachers, tertiary educators, professional associations, teacher trainees and DET-TAFE personnel to provide guidance and clarification of issues related to each Key Learning Area.

Examinations and Certification branch

The branch manages administrative support for the planning, conduct and marking of Higher School Certificate examinations and School Certificate Tests; collects and processes all entry and assessment data for the Higher School Certificate and School Certificate programs and maintains students records. The branch manages the Disability Provisions program for the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate, the Illness/Misadventure appeals programs, the HSC Advice Line and HSC Inquiry Centre.

The branch coordinates the distribution of all Certificates, Records of Achievement and Result Notices for eligible students. The branch appoints the Presiding Officers and Supervisors who administer examinations and the examiners and clerical staff for the marking operations.

Finance branch

Finance Branch is responsible for the management of the Office's budget allocations. Functions undertaken by the branch include the preparation and monitoring of recurrent, capital and revenue budgets, payroll processing, revenue management, payment of all accounts, financial reporting and the timely production of monthly and annual financial statements. Finance Branch also ensures the timely payment of salaries for the examination Presiding Officers and Supervisors, examination markers and seasonal clerical staff involved in the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate programs

Information Services branch

Information Services manages the planning, development and operation of the information technology systems and publishing functions supporting the Office's programs. The branch investigates, trials and implements new applications of information technology systems and services supporting the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate programs. It liaises with other authorities in the development of systems and the provision of data held on the Office's computerised records.

The branch provides both print and electronic publishing and distribution services for the Office, including editing, copyright, design and desktop publishing services. The branch provides Client Services support to schools and the public, and manages the distribution of Board materials. The branch produces interactive curriculum and support materials on CD-ROM and manages the Board of Studies World Wide Web site.

Media and Public Relations

Media and Public Relations Branch is responsible for the media liaison and public relations activities of the Board and the Office of the Board, including special functions and events such as the Premier's Awards and joint Office of the Board of Studies . Department of Education and Community projects: Design Tech, OnSTAGE, Encore, ARTEXPRESS and the Education and Training portfolio stand at the Royal Easter Show. The branch also produces information publications: the Board Bulletin for schools, and On Board for students. Media and Public Relations is responsible for the marketing of the Office.s commercial products.

Planning and Development Branch

Coordinates briefings and advisory materials for the Minister and central agencies and provides quality assurance for letters prepared by the Office for the Minister.s signature. The branch provides support to senior management and advice and assistance to other branches. It coordinates the activities of the Office.s regionally based Liaison Officers. The Chief Research Officer, Librarian and Board secretariat are located in the branch.

Australian Music Examinations Board

The Australian Music Examinations Board in New South Wales is the agency responsible in New South Wales for administering practical and written examinations in music and speech and drama for preliminary grades through to the Fellowship in Music Australia, in accordance with Australian Music Examinations Board requirements. These credentials are awarded by the Federal Australian Music Examinations Board. The AMEB is a federal body, with a governing board comprising the chairpersons of each state organisation.

Aboriginal Education Consultative Group

The Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG) is an independent, committee based Aboriginal organisation established as an incorporated body to provide the New South Wales Government and its agencies with advice on the educational needs and aspirations of Aboriginal communities.

The AECG is funded by the NSW government via the Office of the Board of Studies. It is controlled by a Board of Directors, which elects a full time president every three years.

The AECG.s activities are co-ordinated by a small secretariat, which is attached for administrative purposes to the Office of the Board of Studies. The secretariat also administers grants paid under a number of Commonwealth Government programs.

3.2 Existing policies and law relating to information

In addition to the Act, the Office is subject to other legislation and Government policy and procedures that help to ensure that privacy is protected.

Legislation that has an impact on the handling of personal information includes:

  • Education Act 1990 and Regulation 1996

  • Freedom of Information Act 1989

  • ICAC Act 1988

  • Protected Disclosures Act 1994

  • State Records Act 1998

The following policies and procedures support compliance with the Act:

  • NSW Government Personnel Handbook issued by the Public Sector Management Office, Premier.s Department;

  • Privacy Code of Practice for the NSW Public Sector Workforce Profile, Premier.s Department;

  • State Records Authority of NSW, Government Recordkeeping Manual;

  • Freedom of Information Procedure Manual (issued by Premier.s Department)

  • Office of the Board of Studies Code of Conduct This code of conduct establishes standards of professional behaviour expected of staff of the Office. The code was developed to assist all officers in clarifying their professional and ethical responsibilities in executing their duties, thereby encouraging public confidence in the work of the Board and its Office.

  • Use of Office Communications Devices Policy This policy statement sets out the principles underpinning the use of Office communication devices. The policy covers the responsibilities of all staff in relation to economy, personal use, record keeping, security and privacy, and unlawful use.

  • Records Management Policy The policy provides a basis for the effective management of the records generated by the Office, which in turn are assets of New South Wales. The policy is designed to inform staff about their responsibilities in relation to the creation, control, management, preservation and disposal of official records in all mediums.

  • Security of Electronic Information Systems Policy The Office holds a considerable amount of data in its various computer systems, much of which is confidential and sensitive. This Policy, and its accompanying procedures and materials address all aspects of security relating to the Office.s systems. It sets out the principles held by the Office regarding security, identifies responsibilities of staff, and outlines the Office.s procedures in a wide range of areas.

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4.  Implementation the Privacy Management plan

4.1  Classes of personal information held by the Office of the Board of Studies

In order to carry out its functions as described in section 3 of this document, the Office collects the following classes of information:

  • Personnel records (Office staff).
    Personnel records are maintained by the Human Resources Unit in both paper file and electronic format. The information recorded in these files includes: name, address and next of kin details, bank account details, tax file number, EEO information (provision of which is voluntary). All personal information is collected from employees, or, where provided by another organisation, for entitlement purposes, has been authorised by the officer. Officers can access their personnel information upon request to the Human Resources Unit.
  • Personnel records (casual staff)
    including seasonal clerical staff, examination markers, presiding officers and supervisors and committee members, name and address details, bank account details and tax file numbers. The applicants provide all information. Applications for membership on committees or as examiners/markers require the endorsement of the School Principal/Director. Applicants are aware of this requirement, and that the Office will not accept the application without such endorsement. The original application form is retained, as is an electronic record.

  • Student records
    60% of student records are submitted on-line by schools, negating the need to retain paper records within the Office for those students. Schools submitting information on-line, retain the paper records. All data is held on the Office.s exam system in electronic form. Information held includes name, home address (for HSC candidates only), date of birth, school attended, and ethnicity and disability data. During the life of a record, assessment data and examination mark data are added to the record. Additional information provided to the Office in terms of Disability Provisions (collected from the student and where applicable treating doctors, with the knowledge of the student) and Illness/Misadventure appeals are also held where an application for these provisions is made.

  • Students undertaking practical examinations and /or languages are also required to provide a passport sized photograph for identification purposes. These photo ID.s are provided to the practical examiner, and to the presiding officer for languages examinations. At the completion of the examinations, the photographs are destroyed by either the school principal, or this Office if they are returned.

  • Data in relation to School Certificate, year 11 and Higher School Certificate candidates is retained indefinitely (with the exception of home addresses). Candidates are able to apply for a replacement certificate at any time on a fee for service basis. HSC students are able to undertake the HSC through a pathways program over a five (5) year period.

  • All personal information is collected directly from the student. In some instances, such as N awards, the signature of the student.s parent or guardian is also required.

  • Details of students undertaking distinction courses are held on a separate data base within the Planning and Development Branch.

  • Home schooling
    Information regarding applications and approvals for home schooling are maintained in both paper files and on a database. Information included in the data base is provided by the parent and/or guardian of children who will be home schooled. The Education Act 1990 requires that children who are being home schooled are registered between the age of six (6) and fifteen (15).

  • Teaching personnel employed by registered non-government schools
    Schools seeking registration, or renewal of their registration are required to provide evidence that the teachers within the school, or the persons providing supervision to teachers within the school, possess relevant teacher qualifications. Mandatory information is limited to names and qualifications. In some instances additional personal information is also provided. This information is retained on the school registration file, and is not released without the consent of the persons named.

  • Administration records
    The Client Services Unit, Information Services Branch maintains a mailing list for all schools, other key contacts in public sector agencies, professional bodies, research and community groups, similar organisations and business groups who receive a copy of all the Office.s publications.

The information in the database is either collected directly from the individual or from publicly available sources.

The Office also maintains contact details of members of its Board and Advisory Committees. Information includes private as well as work contact details.

The Office also sells a number of products which can be purchased by members of the public either over the phone, or by completing an order form.

4.2 Compliance with the Information Protection Principles

4.2.1 Personnel records (Office staff)

Collection

Information in relation to all permanent, seconded or temporary employees is collected from the individual. Information maintained, both in file copy and on the Office.s CHRIS Human Resource Management Information System includes home address and telephone, next of kin details to be used in cases of emergency, details of all leave taken, information in relation to work and salary history, details of qualifications submitted by the employee, and internal and external training courses attended.

The Office also maintains records relating to attendance and, where relevant, workers compensation claims, rehabilitation programs for injured workers, medical matters. Details in relation to disciplinary or other sensitive matters are maintained separately to general personnel records. Payroll records, including bank account details, deduction and allowance details, tax file numbers and tax information.

All personnel records are created and maintained in accordance with the requirements of the Personnel Handbook and other relevant legislation. These details are only disclosed to other staff on an as-needed basis and only for business or health and safety reasons. All staff are made aware of the existence of any information on their personnel file and the purposes for which it is used.

Applications for positions at the Office, including curriculum vitae and resumes are used to assist the recruitment process. Generally, unsolicited applications are returned to the individual along with information on applying for jobs in the Office.

Purpose

The collection of information personal information is limited to the necessary information to allow the functions of the Human Resources Unit to be undertaken effectively and efficiently.

Storage security and disposal of personal information

Personnel files holding this information are subject to strict security and are accessible only to authorised staff. Personal information held in the CHRIS Human Resource Management Information System is accessible only to authorised staff on a need-to-know basis. Personnel files are kept in locked cupboards within the HR work area. All electronic data is password protected.

Personnel and payroll records are disposed of in accordance with the General Records Disposal Authority 3 . Personnel Records. Payroll records are disposed of in accordance with General Records Disposal Authority 3 Personnel Records, and/or 8 Financial and Accounting Records and/or 2 Administrative Records:

Notification, access and correction

No information is placed on an officer.s personnel file or recorded in the CHRIS Human Resource Management Information System without the knowledge of the officer. Officers have access to their personnel file upon request and can ask to view and review information in the CHRIS system. Basic information held such as home address details is conveyed to officers from time to time to ensure accuracy. Officers are encouraged to provide updated personnel information, and to notify the Human Resources Unit of any changes to their personal information.

Use

Officers are advised at their entry on duty and during their induction to the Office of the use that may be made, subject to their consent, of the personal information they provide, such as data for the Workforce Profile conducted across all of Government by the Premier.s Department, EEO reporting and release of home telephone/mobile phone numbers to their immediate supervisor/manager.

Disclosure

Personal information is not released without the authority of the officer in accordance with the guidelines provided in the Personnel Handbook issued by the Premier.s Department. Information is not disclosed for any other purpose than that for which it was provided without the consent of the officer.

4.1.2 Personnel Records (Casual employees)

Collection

The collection of personal information is limited to the necessary information to allow the employment and/or payment of:

  • Casual/seasonal staff within the Office

  • Casual clerical marking centre staff;

  • Presiding Officers and supervisors;

  • Examination markers;

  • Curriculum and syllabus committee members;

  • Curriculum writers;

  • Examination Committees;

  • Authorised persons for home schooling

to be undertaken effectively and efficiently.

Information in relation to these employees is collected from the individual. Information maintained both in file copy and on the Office.s casual payroll includes home address and telephone and information in relation to work and salary history.

The Office also maintains records relating to payroll records, including bank account details, tax file numbers and tax information. and workers compensation claims. These details are only disclosed to other staff on an as-needed basis and only for business or health and safety reasons.

Access to this information is limited to authorised staff.

Purpose

The collection of personal information is limited to the necessary information to allow the functions of the Office to be undertaken effectively and efficiently.

Storage security and disposal of personal information

Applications for employment listed above are held under strict security and are accessible only to authorised staff. Personal information held in the Examination System and/or casual payroll system is accessible only to authorised staff on a need-to-know basis. All electronic data is password protected.

Personnel and payroll records are disposed of in accordance with the General Records Disposal Authority 3 . Personnel Records. Payroll records are disposed of in accordance with General Records Disposal Authority 3 Personnel Records, and/or 8 Financial and Accounting Records and/or 2 Administrative Records:

Notification, access and correction

No information is collected without the knowledge and/or consent of the applicant. Applicants are able to check the accuracy of information held by the Office and to request the correction of data, where it is incorrect. In most cases, correction of data can be undertaken over the telephone.

Use

The personal information provided is used only for the purpose for which it was provided. Where the information may be used for other purposes, applicants are advised at the time the information is collected.

Disclosure

Personal information is not released without the authority of the applicant/employee in accordance with the guidelines provided in the Personnel Handbook issued by the Premier.s Department. Information is not disclosed for any other purpose than that for which it was provided without the consent of the applicant/employee.

Student data

Collection

The collection of student data enables the Office to carry out its functions under the Education Act 1990 in relation to the award of the School Certificate, preliminary year 11 and the Higher School Certificate

All student data is collected directly from the students. Schools collect, check and submit the student data either on line or in paper form. Where additional information is required, in the case of an application for a Disability Provision or in case of an illness/misadventure appeal, the student provides the additional information, or authorises the collection of the information.

In the case of N awards ie the non award of a certificate, the signature of the parent/guardian is also required. This need is detailed in the information provided to the student.

Storage security and disposal of personal information

Personal information is stored on the Office.s exam system. Access to this data, is limited to authorised staff, on a need-to-know basis. Data submitted to the Office in paper form is stored securely, and access limited to authorised staff. Sensitive information in relation to Disability Provisions and Illness/Misadventure appeals is not included in the exam data base, but is held on a separate data base. Stringent security is imposed on the information collected.

Data collected from students, and the results awarded to them are retained permanently by the Office. These records are held in the exam system (date from), or on micro film/fiche. All records are held securely.

Notification access and correction

A host of information is provided to students by the Office informing them of the rules, procedures and processes in place for the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate programs. The Student Entry form will be amended to provide additional information in relation to the Office.s commitment to the Information Protection Principles.

In the period between the collection and the examinations, students are asked to confirm, by signing a Confirmation of Entry form, the information held in the Office.s exam system. Where the information is submitted on-line to the Office by the school, the signed Confirmation of Entry form is retained by the school.

Persons who have completed a public examination which resulted in the award of the NSW School Certificate or Higher School Certificate (or the equivalent examinations in past years) are able to obtain a copy of their results upon receipt of a written request and payment of a search fee.

Where there is a need to amend the information held by the Office in relation to a past candidate, data can be amended upon production of supporting documentation. This can take the form of a change of name by deed poll, or, where an abbreviation of their given name was used at the time the examination was conducted, production of a birth certificate showing the given name in full.

Use

Students are asked to confirm the data held by the Office between its collection and the conduct of the examination. Student.s personal information is not used by the Office for any other purpose than that which it was collected for.

Disclosure

Examination candidate details and results are released to:

  • the student

  • the school principal

  • the Department of Education and Communities

  • the Catholic Education Office (results of affiliated schools)

  • Universities Admission Centre

  • Technical Committee on Scaling

  • the Association of Independent Schools (results of affiliated schools)

4.1.4 Home schooling

Collection

The Office employs Authorised Persons to carry out on behalf of the Minister the function of considering applications for home schooling in accordance with the Education Act 1990. Persons wishing to home school their children must make an application to the Office. The Office registers children to be home schooled up to the age of 15. Information is collected from the parent/guardian.

Storage security and disposal

Information on registered home schooled children is maintained on paper files and in a data base. Information is only accessible to authorised staff. Paper files are held in a secure area of the office and electronic records are password protected. Records relating to home schooled children are held permanently as a record of their education.

Notification access and correction

Parents/guardians of home schooled children must be registered and provide changes in circumstances, such as a change of address or addition of registration of another child to the Office. Registration is required to be renewed every 2 years, providing a mechanism for home school information to be updated on a regular basis.

Use

The Office uses the information only for the purpose for which it was collected.

Disclosure

Information on the registration status of home schooled children is provided to the Department of Education and Communities in regard to their role in ensuring all children attend school.

4.1.5 Teaching personnel employed by registered non-government schools

Collection

The process for the Registration of Non-Government schools provides that teachers, or those persons supervising teachers, must be suitably qualified. The information sort is limited to the teachers name and their qualification at the time registration or renewal of registration is sought.

Storage security and disposal

Teachers names and qualifications are retained on individual school registration files. The information is not used for any other purpose other than to satisfy the school registration process.

Notification access and correction

Non-government schools are registered for periods of up to six (6) years. At the time renewal is sought, the qualifications of staff within the school at the time renewal is sought are supplied.

Use

The Office uses the information only for the purpose for which it was collected.

Disclosure

Details of teachers qualifications in individual registered non-government schools are not disclosed without the authorisation of the teachers concerned.

4.1.6 Administrative records

Collection

Mailing list information is collected to enable the Office to distribute news and other information connected with its functions and to correspond with relevant people and organisations.

Contact details for members of the Board and its Committees is used to support the administration of meetings. Private contact details of the Board and its Committee members are collected to enable them to be contacted in urgent cases or emergencies.

Storage security and disposal of personal information

The mailing list database is restricted to authorised persons, and can only be amended by authorised persons, usually upon request. The information is kept as long as it is relevant, is updated when necessary and deleted when no longer required.

Contact details of the Board and its Committees are held securely and are only accessible to the President of the Board, the General Manager and the Board Secretary.

Disclosure

School mailing lists/data bases can be purchased from the Office, provided that the information to be dispatched is education related. Evidence of the information to be dispatched is required prior to the mailing list being made available.

Personal details of private individuals purchasing products from the Office is not retained on the database. Once the purchase has been processed, the system automatically deletes the record.

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5. Internal Review Process

5.1  What do I do if I believe my privacy has been breached?

If an individual has a complaint about the conduct of the Office of the Board of Studies or a member of its staff in relation to the collection, storage, use or disclosure of personal information, a written request should be sent to the Office so that an internal review can be undertaken.

Under section 53 (3) of the Privacy and Personal Information protection Act, an application for an internal review must:

  • Be in writing

  • Be addressed to the Office of the Board of Studies

  • Specify an address in Australia to which a notice can be sent

  • Be lodged with the Office within six (6) months (or such later date as the office may allow) from the time the applicant first became aware of the conduct the subject of the application, and

  • Comply with such other requirements as may be prescribed by the regulations to the Act.

5.2 What does an internal review involve?

An application for an internal review will be dealt with by the Director, Finance and Administration. The Director will not have been substantially involved in the matter that is the subject of the application.

The review will be completed as soon as is reasonably practicable in the circumstances and within sixty (60) days from the day on which the application was received.

As a result of the review the Office may:

  • Take no further action on the matter; or

  • Make a formal apology to the applicant; and/or

  • Take such remedial action as thought appropriate; and/or provide undertakings that the conduct will not occur again; and/or

  • Implement administrative measures to ensure that the conduct will not occur again.

The Office is required to:

  • Notify the NSW Privacy Commissioner of an application for an internal review

  • Provide reports to the Privacy Commissioner on the progress of the internal review

  • Inform the Privacy Commissioner of the findings of the review and of the action taken by the Office in relation to the matter

If requested by the Office, the Privacy Commissioner may undertake the review.

5.3 How will I be informed of the outcome of an internal review?

The Office will acknowledge the receipt of an application and write to an applicant within 14 days after completing the review and advise the applican

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