We've been asked on a number of occasions whether you must register with the Data Protection Registrar if you use an online system such as ToucanLearn in your childminding setting. The simple answer is almost certainly 'Yes'. The Data Protection Act requires that any personal data (defined as data that can be traced to an identifiable human being) stored in an automated system must be registered with the Information Commissioner's Office.
Unfortunately the ICO doesn't make the law and even their advice is ambiguous in certain instances. If you complete their 'self assessment' as to whether you need to register under the Data Protection Act, if you state that the personal information you hold is not on an electronic system then they state that you do not need to register. However, in other explanations, the state that if personal information is stored in a filing system aimed at easing information retrieval, then you do have to register. The one exception could be that the information is held in strict chronological order with no other ordering aimed at easy access.
The ICO is clear that keeping personal data on digital cameras, CCTV or mobile phones does fall into the area where registration is required.
Registration currently costs £35 per year and registration can be done online. Renewal payments are usually taken automatically each year.
Here at ToucanLearn we register our own business and declare what we may use the data for. Our registration does not cover our individual users.
It's unlikely that many childminders would fall outside of the requirement to register. Registration is not required because you use a system such as ToucanLearn specifically, it's required because it's almost inevitable that you will hold some information, somewhere, that does fall under the requirements.
Sharing your pictures has never been easier with ToucanLearn's facility to email photos directly from your mobile phone into the correct Daily Diary! There isn't an easier way to maintain EYFS diaries throughout the day and what's more, you can share your diaries straight with the relevant parents too, so that they can stay informed throughout the day.
Those members who tested this for us are unanimous in their praise!
"This great new feature of being able to send photos straight to the learning journey is great! It really makes my work very much enjoyable and its simple to use", Fay, Childminder, Bedfordshire.
Here’s what to do! Give it a try and let us know how you get on...
- Take a photo on your mobile phone
- Add a subject line and message - this will appear in the diary
- Include the child's name (or children's names) in the subject or message
- Email it to firstname.lastname@example.org directly from your phone
The photo will automatically appear in the account/s of the child/children's written in the subject line.
Subject: Musical statues
Message: Ben and Polly played musical statues, Polly won because Ben got the giggles and couldn't stay still!
This email will be turned into a Daily Diary entry for both Ben and Polly with the subject line as the entry title, and the message becomes the caption for the photograph.
Photo entries should appear in your diary within two minutes. If we fail to match the photo to the correct diary then you will receive an email back explaining the problem.
This feature is for Premium Members only as we don't offer photo uploads on free accounts.