Impact assessment for Trafalgar College

Inspiration Trust did not have the information requested.

Dear Inspiration Trust

I should be grateful if you could send me a copy of the Impact Assessment for Trafalgar College.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours faithfully

J Downs

James Goffin, Inspiration Trust

Dear Ms Downs,
I acknowledge receipt of your freedom of information request; as this was
sent during the Easter holidays there has been a delay in us receiving it
for processing. As I'm sure you are aware, under the Freedom of
Information (Time for Compliance with Request) Regulations requests to
schools operate under a specific framework, and a response is required
within 20 school days - excluding holidays - subject to a maximum time of
60 working days.
I have made an initial review of your request and unfortunately I am
unable to process it as I am not clear on the information you are
requesting. You have asked for "the Impact Assessment for Trafalgar
College" but you have not specified any topic area(s) for any impact
assessment. As this could refer to a wide range of education, population,
or environmental areas, in line with Section 16 of the Freedom of
Information Act I must ask you for further clarification before I can
properly process the request and respond with the appropriate information.
Yours faithfully,

James Goffin

Head of Communications

Inspiration Trust
28 Bethel Street
Norwich
NR2 1NR

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Dear James Goffin

The Impact Assessment I require is the Impact Assessment compiled for a free school. This shows the possible impact of the proposed free school on neighbouring schools. For examples see https://www.gov.uk/government/publicatio....

I hope this clarifies my request.

Yours sincerely

J Downs

James Goffin, Inspiration Trust

Dear Ms Downs,
Thank you for your clarification. I have now reviewed your request.
I have been unable to locate any information held by the Inspiration Trust
relating to Trafalgar College and similar to the impact assessment
published at
[1]https://www.gov.uk/government/publicatio...
We do hold other information on local need that was submitted as part of
the Trafalgar College free school application. This information is exempt
from disclosure under Section 21 of the act, as it already reasonably
accessible from the Department for Education website and can be downloaded
here: [2]https://www.gov.uk/government/publicatio...
I trust this satisfies your request. If you are unhappy with the response
provided, you may ask for an internal review. To request an internal
review, please write to:
Head of Governance
Inspiration Trust
Weights and Measures Building
28 Bethel Street
Norwich
NR2 1NR
giving the reasons for your dissatisfaction.
If you do not agree with the outcome of the internal review, you may lodge
an appeal with the Information Commissioner ([3]www.ico.org.uk). The
Information Commissioner can consider complaints about any
aspect of the way in which requests for information have been handled,
however the Information Commissioner would be unlikely to consider your
complaint if you have not first requested an internal review.
You can write to the Information Commissioner at:
Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Yours faithfully,

James Goffin

Head of Communications

Inspiration Trust

28 Bethel Street
Norwich
NR2 1NR

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Dear Inspiration Trust,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Inspiration Trust's handling of my FOI request 'Impact assessment for Trafalgar College'.

I have been told the Trust holds no information about the Impact Assessment for Trafalgar College which summarised the likely impact on the Trafalgar College free school on neighbouring schools.

I find it difficult to understand how a free school proposer, namely the Inspiration Trust, does not hold a copy of the Impact Assessment.

I was also told my request for the Impact Assessment was exempt from disclosure because it was reasonably accessible elsewhere. I was given a link to the Department for Education. However, this link showed successful free school proposal forms approved by the Department for Education during the wave 8 application round. Trafalgar College was one of these.

An application form is not an Impact Assessment. Impact Assessments for free schools which opened in September 2016 and 2017 are not on the DfE's website.

However, the DfE has published the letter sent to the Trust when the free school proposal was successful. One of the conditions of acceptance was 'The need for additional post-16 places in the town from 2021 - to be demonstrated by EFA's review of post-16 provision in Great Yarmouth'. This implies an Impact Assessment was done. Again, I find it difficult to understand how the Trust does not have a copy.
https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk...

I should be grateful if you could undertake an Internal Review. I am not satisfied with the explanation that such an important document as an Impact Assessment is not held by the Trust when it forms an important part of the application process. I am also not satisfied by being told disclosure is exempt because the information was available elsewhere when it is not.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...

Yours faithfully,

J Downs

Dear James Goffin

I wrote to you on 24 April requesting an Internal Review of the Inspiration Trust's handling of my request for a copy of the Impact Assessment for Trafalgar College.

I have not yet received the result of the Internal Review despite over 20 working days having passed.

I should be grateful if you could send me the result of the review by 31 May 2018.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely

J Downs

James Goffin, Inspiration Trust

Dear Ms Downs,
Your request was passed to my colleague for their consideration. I will
check with them on the progress.
While I acknowledge the ICO do recommend a similar timescale for internal
reviews as the original request, please note there is no statutory
timeframe for the completion of an internal review.
Yours sincerely,
James Goffin
Head of external affairs

Inspiration Trust

28 Bethel Street
Norwich
NR2 1NR

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Dear James Goffin

Thank you for your prompt reply. I look forward to receiving the Internal Review shortly.

Yours sincerely

J Downs

Sally Culling, Inspiration Trust

Dear Ms Downs
I have considered your request for an internal review of the Trust's
decision regarding your Freedom of Information request relating to
Trafalgar College.
You initially requested "a copy of the Impact Assessment for Trafalgar
College". My colleague requested clarification of this, and you replied:
"The Impact Assessment I require is the Impact Assessment compiled for a
free school. This shows the possible impact of the proposed free school on
neighbouring schools. For examples see
[1]https://www.gov.uk/government/publicatio...
In coming to a decision on your request, my colleague reviewed our
records. They found that we did not hold the very specific information you
requested.
I have reviewed your request and concluded that they were correct in their
assessment and that the Trust cannot comply with your request because we
do not hold the information requested.
It is not correct to say that your "request for the Impact Assessment was
exempt from disclosure because it was reasonably accessible elsewhere".
Your request was refused because we do not hold the information. The Trust
however has a duty to be helpful, and as such my colleague referred you on
to other, different, information - the Trafalgar College application
documentation - that may be of interest to you and is published on the
Department for Education website. I am sorry if the reference to Section
21 was confusing in this regard.
It is also not correct to say that "an Impact Assessment... forms an
important part of the application process."  The impact assessment of the
sort you have requested is not part of the application process, but part
of the Department for Education's internal assessment process. As such, it
is created and held by the Department for Education for their use. The
application we submitted - which reflects the information we compiled - is
available on the DfE website and we have provided you with a link to it.
Your reference to "EFA's review of post-16 provision in Great Yarmouth"
states only that the EFA would review provision. It does not follow that
the Trust would be privy to that, or hold a copy of any outcome. 
It is quite possible that an impact assessment of the type you requested
was carried out, but by the Department and not by the Inspiration Trust
and the Trust does not hold a copy of it. We cannot supply what we do not
have.
If you do not agree with the outcome of this internal review, you may
lodge an appeal with the Information Commissioner. You can write to the
Information Commissioner at: Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe
House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF.
Yours faithfully,
Sally Culling
Head of Governance
Inspiration Trust
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday - Trust HQ 01603 280923
Tuesday - Hewett Academy 01603 672676
Mobile  07506 133927

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Dear Sally Culling,

Thank you for the Internal Review.

I accept that the Trust doesn't have a copy of Impact Assessments. I'm surprised the Department for Education (DfE) doesn't think it necessary to share these with free school proposers. You would think it was part of the application procedure for Impact Assessments to be shared not just with the proposer but with other stakeholders as well.

Unfortunately, the DfE has a dismal record of keeping such information hidden.

Yours sincerely,

J Downs