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FAQ - Requesting information about my child
Townsville Catholic Education schools are the custodians of important information which enables us to care for our students. From time to time, parents or other individuals may ask for access to information about students, themselves, our staff or others in our school communities.
Each of the responses to these questions reflect our legal and pastoral obligations to protect the information entrusted to us about our students and families.
How can I request information about my child?
All requests for information such as student records, reports or attendance information should be sent to the school in writing (e.g. email or letter).
If you are not known to the school, we may request a verification of identity (VOI). This can take the form of a photographic identity document such as a driver's licence, passport page, proof of age card or similar, and must be validated by a JP.
We request VOI to ensure information is only released to the child’s parent/carer/guardian or an independent student.
Why can’t I have access to details about other students?
When you request information about your child, all names of other students, staff, parents or members of the public will be redacted (blacked out) from the documents supplied. This is because we must protect the privacy of ALL members of our school communities.
Requests for information about other students and families are commonly made when there has been an incident or altercation. We have legal and policy obligations NOT to release information about other students, staff or families, unless all parties involved agree to share the information.
Can I be denied access to my child's information?
We may not be able to give information about your child in the following circumstances:
- You are not the parent/guardian/carer listed on the enrolment form or other school document.
- You cannot prove you are the parent/carer/guardian of the child (e.g. birth certificate or other court documents)
- There are court orders preventing us from giving information to a specific individual.
- You can’t provide VOI
- Other reasons under legislation – e.g. Privacy Act 1988 APP 12 and Child Protection Act 1999.
How long will it take to process my request for information?
Most requests for information can be resolved within two weeks. For more complicated requests and historical information, we attempt to resolve within a month. We undertake to keep you informed of the progress of your request.
Please note, that in some circumstances, a parent listed on a child’s birth certificate is entitled to information about that child, even if they are not the person enrolling the child (i.e. they are not on the enrolment form). This would not apply if there is a court order in place.
If you are unhappy about a decision to refuse a request for information, please refer to the TCE Complaints Management Process.