Alt-text: Sharing personal information in a Kāhui Ako
This guide is an overview of how and when you can share information that identifies children, young people and students (personal information) and the important steps you need to take.
This guidance is useful for:
- Kāhui Ako lead principal
- Board/committee chair (school or ECE)
- Learning support leader
- Across school teacher
You can share personal information if you have a clear and specific purpose that is in the interest of the child or young person.
For example, your purpose could be to run peer mentoring to support achievement in maths for Year 1-8 students. Consider:
- Must individuals be identifies for this purpose? If not, use aggregate data or NSNs.
- Is sharing the information in the best interest of the child or young person?
A privacy protocol sets the parameters for how you will use and protect information. To share any type of information you must have a protocol in place. A template is available at education.govt.nz/kahui-ako-info-sharing
You can share most personal information if you follow the right process to keep children, young people and the Kāhui Ako safe. The process is dependent on how sensitive the information is and whether harm could result to the child or young person if the information is lost or passed on.
Scale of sensitivity and examples of information type
[Image of a continuum coloured green on left and labelled non-sensitive, merging into yellow and then orange in the centre, labelled sensitive, merging into red on the right, labelled highly sensitive]
Examples of non-sensitive information (in green box):
- Aggregate data
Examples of information that identifies individuals but is not sensitive (in yellow boxes):
- Progress and achievement
Examples of sensitive information (in orange boxes):
- Learning support
- Health or disability information
- External agency involvement
- Mental health information
Examples of highly sensitive information (in red boxes):
- Sexual health
- Existence of abuse
You can share personal information if the following procedures are in place:
For non-sensitive information:
- With a Kāhui Ako privacy protocol
For information that identifies individuals but is not sensitive:
- With the correct privacy statement and privacy protocol
For sensitive information:
- With written consent and a privacy statement and a privacy protocol
For highly sensitive information:
- If you think a child is at risk of harm, inform the appropriate agencies immediately. You cannot share with your Kāhui Ako group. Seek consent to share ONLY with specific people who need to know.
Step by step checklist for sharing personal information
Does the information identify children or young people?
- If no, set out the process in a Kāhui Ako privacy protocol
If yes (it does identify children or young people), is the information sensitive?
- If no, inform parents and caregivers in a privacy statement and set out the process in a Kāhui Ako privacy protocol.
If yes (the information is sensitive), is the information highly sensitive?
- If no, seek consent to share, inform parents and caregivers in a privacy statement and set out the process in a Kāhui Ako privacy protocol.
If yes (the information is highly sensitive), is there a risk to a person’s life or health?
- If no, consider the best interest of the child or young person, seek consent to share with people who need to know. The school or service must put procedures in place for dealing with highly sensitive information.
If yes (there is a risk to a person’s life or health), share immediately with agencies that can respond. The school or service must put procedures in place for dealing with highly sensitive information.
Example: Sharing aggregate information
[Image of Kāhui Ako Lead principal]: Ana wants to share information that identifies individuals with an outside person so they can aggregate it for the Kāhui Ako.
She can share it because the final data will be anonymous. The Kāhui Ako privacy protocol will set out the process Ana will follow but no further steps are needed to share it.
Example: Sharing information that identifies individuals but is not sensitive
[Image of across school teacher]: Marama is an across school teacher in a Kāhui Ako that is partnering with the local iwi. She wants to share progress and achievement information for a joint mentoring programme across the Kāhui Ako.
She can share if the iwi and the Kāhui Ako develop a joint privacy protocol and they inform parents and caregivers in a privacy statement.
Example: Sharing sensitive information
[Image of learning support leader] Julian wants to share information with other learning support leaders (e.g. SENCOs) to develop a register of current learning needs across the Kāhui Ako to plan and deliver coordinated support.
He can do it if the Kāhui Ako gains consent by sending out a privacy statement with a consent form.
Example: Sharing highly sensitive information
[Image of principal]: Peter has just found out that a child has come to school with a broken arem and he suspects family violence.
He is considering talking with other principals in the Kāhui Ako in case they have siblings of the injured child in their schools.
He must inform Oranga Tamariki and/or the Police immediately.
He must not discuss the details with the Kāhui Ako group.
Sharing personal information securely is critical to protect the information from being lost or passed on.
- Use aggregate data or NSNs if you can.
- Use a password to protect files that identify individuals.
- Password-protect all files emailed or uploaded to GoogleDocs, DropBox, etc.
- Provide the password for protected files separately (over the phone, via text message, or in person).
- Use a password-protected (encrypted) USB stick if transporting personal information.
- Don’t share highly sensitive information in your Kāhui Ako group. Seek consent to share with specific people who need to know.
- Don’t share personal information solely for convenience.
- Don’t discuss personal information with or within hearing range of people who shouldn’t know about it.
- Don’t share personal information if you’re not sure that it is in the best interest of the child or young person and can be shared securely.
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