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Confused [hmm]

(18 Posts)
maypole1 Thu 26-May-11 20:12:56

my child is moving up to secondary in september.

We want to see the file they are sending to the secondary school be fire hand are we allowed at the very least to have a look or even a copy would be good.

I asked the lady at reception and she said i had to write to the head so my oh mailed him Today

And I just gonna get a big fat no or are we legally allowed has any one else done this

If they do say no can I demand to see it in. Legal sense

AbigailS Thu 26-May-11 20:33:44

When you say "file" what do you mean? The office file with your registration form, home-school agreement, medical form, contact details and any letters you have sent the school (not absence letters, but formal communications), etc. If so I'm just curious why you feel the need, as it's info you've already supplied the primary school? Or the file with some examples of his/her work that some school pass on? I'm pretty sure you have a right to see either. The only file that is limited is if there is a "closed" file (child protection).

BarbarianMum Thu 26-May-11 20:35:25

As far as I understand it (am Chair of local preschool and I imagine its the same thing):
-you have a right to see the file following applic in writing
-before you see it, it will be gone through and any info pertaining to other pupils will be blacked out
-if you want a hard copy to take away with you, they don't have to agree (I think) and can charge for this

maypole1 Thu 26-May-11 21:02:35

Abigails the reason why I what to see the file the primary school are sending on to my Los secondary school because it will have a direct impact on how lo is viewed in new school.

Also just on a personal not I would like to know how they have perceived lo over the years

Want to also make sure than what I was being told about lo matches was was written in this file they never thought I would ask for

I really like to take a keen interest in my los education

Or dose every on think i am a crazy Lol

Barbarian mum what will be in the file exactly ?

MigratingCoconuts Thu 26-May-11 21:14:35

I am a little surprised that you wonder if things have been kept from you?? Or that your dc will be viewed in a less than nice light??

Why not simply ask for a meeting with the year 6 teacher to discuss progrss and transition to secondary school? i don't see what any file will usefully tell you.

AbigailS Thu 26-May-11 21:19:22

Maybe your school operates differently to the local authorities I've worked for but the children's files contain:
admission form, health declaration, home-school agreement, photo consent, internet consent, contact details, etc. that you provided on admission and any updates
copies of each year's school report
formal written letters that you have sent to the school e.g. letters of complaint addressed to head teacher (not just please could you change Xs reading book as it hasn't been changed all week type letters).
If your child has been excluded the legal paperwork for that would be in there as well, copies of which you would have recieved as part of the exclusion process.
If your child is on the SEN register IEPs etc. are sent seperately, but again you should already have copies of all of these from the primary school.
Are you worried there are going to be undisclosed notes about your child? If so, please don't worry, I've never come across that.

mnistooaddictive Thu 26-May-11 21:19:33

To be honest, I think you are focusing on the wrong thing. Primary files are rarely looked at before October and only then if there is a problem. The stuff that affects the way the school see a pupil is the notes made at a meeting between the current class teacher and z representative from the secondary school. We always sent the prospective head of year into primary school to get a couple of sentences about each child. As this is done verbally there is nothing to give you a copy of. For pupils with sen, primary senco has meeting with secondary senco/hlta. Again this is done verbally so nothing for you to see.

MigratingCoconuts Thu 26-May-11 21:28:11

yes, i agree. I think you are wanting to be part of the dialogue between professionals and it is this communication that makes for the most effctive transition from primary to secondary.

clam Thu 26-May-11 21:40:21

To be honest, if you suspect the school might be passing on unflattering accounts of your child, you won't find it in any written format. There will be a meeting between the current teacher and the Year 7 liaison teacher, between now and the end of term, where any issues that are relevant to a smooth transition will be discussed. You have no way of knowing what is actually said, I'm afraid. You have to trust that the staff members are professional and only pass on factual unbiased information that is useful for the new school to know.

Clarabel22 Thu 26-May-11 21:41:30

Ha ha! Moved ds to new primary and was given a chunky brown envelope to take to his new school (secretary said it would save them postage). Eventually I caved into temptation and opened it (it was well sealed!). Anyway I am VERY glad I did! It had highly personal and confidential information about me that I had sent in to support the original application. Also, a hilarious transcript of a heated conversation I had with a supply teacher, which she clearly documented to cover her arse, after he had been involved in some high jinks at school. She stated I had admitted he engaged in this behaviour at home when I had specifically said the opposite (it was the only time I have ever been short tempered with a teacher - be warned!). I removed these parts and carefully resealed, no one any the wiser.

Anyway, it is information about your child, I cannot see how they could possibly refuse.

maypole1 Thu 26-May-11 21:49:17

CLarabel22 thats really funny lol

Yes I know they have a meeting with the year 7 people and I have arranged my own meeting with the senco from the new school but I just want to know whats in the file their sending about my child to the new school.

My child is actually very well behaved

But as stated on a previous thread is being severely bullied and wanted to see if any of that in their , and also has sen

clam Thu 26-May-11 21:50:11

No-one's suggested they will refuse. Just that the OP is unlikely to find anything incriminating in there.
I'm very surprised that you were given the envelope to pass on to the new school yourself, sealed or not. In my experience, the school will pass it on themselves, once asked for it by the new school.

MigratingCoconuts Thu 26-May-11 22:00:58

I agree sounds shocking and I am also very surprised by that.

Mum2be79 Fri 27-May-11 19:38:38

Hi as requested - found your thread!

I thought you would be entitled to see it (data protection act). I didn't read this thread until school finished tonight so I cannot give a definite answer. Certainly nobody at our school has requested something like that to my knowledge. Considering you are allowed to see your medical files, I do not see what the problem is. Maybe you can direct the request to the chair of governors.

Knowing 'my lot', they would probably be confused as to why you want to look and would ponder on it but I really cannot see a reason why they would refuse. Years ago when we had a summer term parents evening (to discuss the annual report) a parent wanted to see her daughter's books. We were told by senior management not to put them out (why - I do not know). When I told the head the next day, she said she would have to give 15 days notice - which I thought was ridiculous.

What do you expect to see in the file? As far as I am aware, the only records that are transferred are the following:
1. personal details (name, address, name of doctor, emergency contacts)

2. correspondence (for those that have had dealings with outside agencies via school such as social services, speech therapy, behavioural support, home-school support, CAMS etc, etc in which case as a parent, you would have copies of anyways if relevant)

3. SAT results (and any other relevant assessment results - that i expect parents to already know)

4. Previous school report

5. IEPs (if relevant)

Our school only transfer the basic stuff. Any other correspondence is usually verbally. The Y6 teachers always have a chat with the Y7 teachers about behaviour,how they'll cope, friendship groups and they have an input into grouping the children into classes as far as friendship groups are concerned.

Hope that is helpful.

mrz Fri 27-May-11 20:21:44

What do you expect to see in the file?

Our files contain

1. personal details (name, address, name of doctor, emergency contacts)

2. correspondence (between school and parents and if any outside agency involvement - social services, speech therapy, behavioural support, home-school support, CAMHS etc,

maypole1 Fri 27-May-11 20:28:38

Than you mum2be

AdelaofBlois Sun 29-May-11 20:15:19

The files are probably a red herring as they won't contain much you didn't know, and won't be critical to the exchange (where information will be given verbally).

But you do have a right to see them. Indeed, I suspect you have the right to see a lot more. In a previous life I had the misfortune to coordinate a university department's response to data protection requests, usually in the light of appeals over degree classification. We had to provide all information which was written or electronically stored which had the student's name on or in which they were identified-obviously essays and feedback, exam scripts and written discussions about the student; but also e-mails dealing with routine admin, tutor's notes from seminars, even recordings of presentations in which the applicant never spoke but did attend. Eventually we developed huge bulging files logging all this stuff, so that we can know after five years that x had a minor headache and came to a different seminar one week. I have no reason to believe the same would not apply to schools, and indeed am shocked at how unaware some of my colleagues seem to be about this.

So, you can ask for the files, or for a fuller disclosure. But I don't see the point...

backpackjo Sun 29-May-11 20:59:43

You have the right to request your son's educational file under the data protection act/pupil information regulations. It is free to view the file but the school can charge up to £50 for photocopying (depending on no. of pages). They cannot refuse your request for a hard copy, but it can take up to 40 days to supply (after receiving the fee and possibly proof of identity - this may not be necessary if you are known to the school). You do not need to give any reasons or justify why you want the information - it is information about your child and you have every right to view it.

There is more information here from the Information Commissioner's office. If you have any problems getting the school to comply, you can raise a complaint with the ICO.

I have a child with SEN and I help other parents deal with SEN issues, and it is quite usual for parents to request educational records in preparation for appeals and assessments. Sadly, it's not always true that all the information in the file will already be shared with you. I found some letters (regarding my son's SEN) in my son's records which had never been copied to me (and would have triggered earlier intervention had I been aware of it). I know of similar instances with other parents too.

If your son has SEN, it would be prudent of you to get a copy of the records yourself and hand it personally to the SENCO of his new school. They should be transferred automatically of course, but I have known of cases where children have been off the SEN radar for years because the records weren't properly transferred (and became untraceable a few years after they'd left primary), so years of records simply disappeared.

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