Please return by 11th May 2018.

Dear Parent/Carer,

Parental Permission for use of Biometrics – Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

The school card system for use with our cashless catering system will be replaced by a biometric system operated by our current providers (Nationwide Retail Systems Ltd).

The system works in the following way: a logarithmical numerical value is derived from the child’s fingerprint when it is first placed on the reading device; it is this logarithmical numerical value which is then stored. Each time the child’s fingerprint is subsequently re-read, a logarithmical numerical value is again generated. This is compared with the set of stored logarithmical values, uniquely identifying the child within the population of the school if a match is found. No image of the fingerprint is stored.

One of the benefits of using biometric systems instead of card readers is the avoidance of lost cards. The current system often means pupils are inconvenienced when cards are lost as they have to make arrangements for a replacement, some pupils will choose to go without lunch if they have lost/forgotten their card and in addition, the cost of replacing cards also needs to be taken into consideration.

We need to obtain written parental consent to use pupils’ biometric data in an automated recognition system. Both parents and any other person with parental responsibility for all pupils under the age of 18 must be notified before using the child’s biometric data as part of an automated biometric recognition system. The Act requires us to obtain the permission of at least one parent/carer before processing a child’s biometric information. It also prohibits us from processing a child’s information if a parent/carer does not give permission.  Should any parent refuse to give permission for the use of their child’s biometric data we will be obliged to provide reasonable alternative means by which their data can be processed. This will be by the provision of a card or PIN number.

I hope you will see that the new system will make it much easier and more efficient for all concerned. Please return the attached permission slip to your son/daughter’s form tutor by Friday 11th May 2018.

Thank you for your assistance with this matter.

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