Facial recognition use in educational establishments

Department for Education did not have the information requested.

Dear Department for Education,

Under the Freedom of Information Act please advise the following:

1) Please provide a list of educational establishments using facial recognition for students 18 and under.

2) Please provide your advice to companies which are providers to schools and schools/educational establishments wishing to use facial recognition technology.

3) Please advise if you have been approached by any companies wishing to supply facial recognition to schools and provide all communications you have had with them, this includes all communications, i.e. minutes of meetings, letters, emails, video calls, etc.

4) Please advise if your office has examined or have any details of standards any facial recognition hardware and software to be used in educational establishments.

Yours faithfully,

Pippa King

MINISTERS, Department for Education

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ACCOUNT, Unmonitored, Department for Education

Dear  Pippa King 

Thank you for your recent enquiry which was received on 2 September.

A reply will be sent to you as soon as possible. For information; the
departmental standard for correspondence received is that responses should
be sent within 20 working days as you are requesting information under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000. Your correspondence has been allocated
reference number 2021-0039933.

 

Department for Education

Ministerial and Public Communications Division

Tel: 0370 000 2288

Web: [1]https://www.education.gov.uk
Twitter: [2]https://www.twitter.com/educationgovuk
Facebook: [3]https://www.facebook.com/educationgovuk

 

 

 

 

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ACCOUNT, Unmonitored, Department for Education

Dear Ms Pippa King

Thank you for your request for information, which was received on 02
September 2021. I have dealt with your request under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000.

You requested:
1) Please provide a list of educational establishments using facial
recognition for students 18 and under.
2) Please provide your advice to companies which are providers to schools
and schools/educational establishments wishing to use facial recognition
technology.
3) Please advise if you have been approached by any companies wishing to
supply facial recognition to schools and provide all communications you
have had with them, this includes all communications, i.e. minutes of
meetings, letters, emails, video calls, etc.
4) Please advise if your office has examined or have any details of
standards any facial recognition hardware and software to be used in
educational establishments.

As you are aware from the Department’s responses to your previous requests
for information ref: 2021-0033572 which we received on 02 July 2021,
2018-0046919 on 29 Nov 2018, and 2017-0051071 on 23 October 2017, schools
and colleges are autonomous and have the freedom to make their own
decisions on whether or not to make use of biometric technology. If a
school or college does choose to implement automated biometric recognition
systems the information must be managed in line and within the Protection
of Freedoms Act 2012 and the Data Protection Act 1998.

The department does not retain details of any educational establishment
that uses biometric systems. 

The department does not hold information relating to the use of facial, or
standards of, recognition technology in educational establishments and do
not know of any other department which might hold such information. Nor do
we provide advice to providers of such technology. The department's
publication [1]Protection of children's biometric information in
schools explains the legal duties schools and colleges have if they wish
to use biometric information about pupils.

If you have any queries about this letter, please contact me. Please
remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

If you are unhappy with the way your request has been handled, you should
make a complaint to the Department by writing to me within two calendar
months of the date of this letter.  Your complaint will be considered by
an independent review panel, which were not involved in the original
consideration of your request. 

 

Yours sincerely
 
Richard Bunting
Teacher Regulation, School Safeguarding and Safety Team
 
 
 

References

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