The Trust is committed to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 which came into force on 1 January 2005 and which comes to include Academies by the Academies Act 2010, with effect from 1 January 2011.
Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, any person has a legal right to ask for access to information held by the Trust. They are entitled to be told whether the Trust holds the information, and to receive a copy, subject to certain exemptions and payment of any reasonable charges.
The Trust routinely makes information available to the public on the Trust or one of the Trust’s Academy’s web sites. Requests for other information are dealt with in accordance with statutory guidance as while the Act assumes openness, it recognises that certain information is sensitive and there are exemptions to protect this information.
The Act is fully retrospective, so that any past records which the Trust holds is covered by the Act. To this end the Trust has a Retention Schedule based on the schedule recommended by the Records Management Society of Great Britain, which guides the Trust as to how long it should keep records.
The Trust recognises that it is an offence to wilfully conceal, damage or destroy information in order to avoid responding to an enquiry.
Requests for personal data are still covered by the Data Protection Act. Individuals can request to see what information the Trust holds about them. This is known as a Subject Access Request, and must be dealt with in accordance with the Trust’s Data Protection Policy.
Requests for information about anything relating to the environment – such as air, water, land, the natural world or the built environment and any factor or measure affecting these – are covered by the Environmental Information Regulations.
Requests under EIR are dealt with in the same way as those under FoIA, but they do not need to be written and can be verbal.
This policy and procedure applies to all staff across the Trust.