Security of personal data during remote learning – UODO’s guide for schools
─ The GDPR is not an obstacle to distance education during the Coronavirus pandemic, it gives the possibility for schools to reasonably implement appropriate distance education methods and techniques, while at the same time respecting the basic data protection rules – said Jan Nowak, the President of the Personal Data Protection Office (UODO).
The extraordinary situation caused that schools and teachers had to organise effective communication with students and their parents in a very short period of time. Many schools have so far not used the tools enabling conducting classes remotely, now they have to quickly make use of the available and feasible solutions. While using them, it is important to get acquainted with recommendations and good practices in order to ensure that data processing is safe.
- I would like to thank very much the Personal Data Protection Office for addressing the issue of personal data security during remote learning. We will encourage school principals, teachers, as well as students and parents to become acquainted with this material, said the Minister of National Education, Dariusz Piontkowski. — It is important not to forget the rights of everyone to personal data protection when the activities in kindergartens, schools and educational institutions are suspended. I am convinced that the guide will be a very helpful tool for the whole educational community, stressed the Minister for Education.
It is necessary for education representatives to remember about taking care of the rights of the persons whose personal data will be processed with the use these tools, as well as about the security of these data. In case of doubt, school principals and teachers should consult the designated data protection officers.
To meet the needs of controllers and data protection officers at schools, the UODO has developed a special study which provides initial guidance on how to ensure the safe processing of data while using online teaching methods.
It is addressed to the school principals and teachers, but also provides useful information for parents and students. With the help of the Ministry of National Education, this study will reach all schools and educational institutions.
At the same time, the UODO urges the relevant authorities to support schools in providing safe distance education.