cctv footage at Varndean school

Oliver Wheen made this Freedom of Information request to Brighton and Hove City Council

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, Brighton and Hove City Council should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

From: Oliver Wheen

22 February 2009

Dear Sir or Madam,

I was wondering whether I would be able to get cctv footage from my
school. My bag was stolen from the boys changing rooms whilst i was
in P.E about three weeks ago, it had my Ipod touch, all my school
clothes and workbooks in it. I asked to see cctv footage from
outside the changing rooms and the school reluctantly let me see it
but on conditions that someone else operated the footage, which I
thought was fair.

When I went to see it, however the woman who was controlling the
footage couldn't be bothered to go through the whole hour and forty
minutes that I had been in P.E so she fast-forwarded through the
whole thing and refused to go any slower. When I complained and
asked to speak to someone higher up, the deputy head teacher miss
Spivey said that under the data protection act i wasn't allowed to
see the footage in the first place and definitely not again. My bag
was taken because my P.E teacher hadn't locked the changing rooms
so i think the school is partly responsible anyway.

The reason I'm writing is because I'm wondering whether I was
entitled to see that footage and what I should do now because I
have no idea what else there is. Could I still see it if it hasn't
yet been deleted, or if not whether I could take legal action
against the school and claim the contents on their insurance. I'm
sorry if the questions are inappropriate for the advice you are
offering but any guidance would be really appreciated.

Yours faithfully,

Oliver Wheen

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Dr K J Hamer left an annotation (22 February 2009)

Quote-marks You can request the tape under freedom of information, but under the Data Protection Act, the faces of anyone appearing on the tape would need to be obscured. This is because individuals' images are classed as 'data', and cannot be processed or circulated without the individuals' permission.
So I would suggest that your parents intervene and speak to the school so they properly watch the tape and find the culprit, it's doubtful the FOI request will get what you want, although it should be highly embarrassing for the school's management team.

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From: Freedom Of Information
Brighton and Hove City Council

23 February 2009

Oliver

Under Data Protection Act you are entitled to CCTV footage of yourself
but not to that of other people. In this case I would suggest that you
take independent advice from the
Citizens Advice Bureau who will be able to advice you as to your best
way forward.

Wendy Kassamani
Information Compliance Administrator
Brighton & Hove City Council
Tel: 01273 296636

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From: Oliver Wheen

10 March 2009

Dear Freedom Of Information,

Alright. Thanks a lot wendy

Yours sincerely,

Oliver Wheen

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