Biometric Technology

Biometric Technology information and how it will be used

Biometric information is information about a person’s physical or behavioral characteristics that can be used to identify them.

An example of Biometric information can be biometric data taken from a pupil’s fingerprint that we use in the schools restaurant for cashless catering (Click this link to see the Cashless Catering page).  The software captures a digital signature of the students’ fingertip that is turned into an alphanumeric string, which is then encrypted and stored on our own school server.  No one has access to this information, and the stored data can never be viewed as anything other than a string of numbers and letters, i.e. we do not store fingerprints!
Having used this biometric information system since November 2007 we know that the technology is both safe and reliable.  Please let us reassure you that information collected will be solely for school use and held on school systems only.

You should note that the law places specific requirements on schools when using personal information, such as biometric information, about pupils for the purposes of an automated biometric recognition system.

For example:

  1. the school cannot use the information for any purpose other than those for which it was originally obtained and made known to the parent(s) (i.e. as stated above);
  2. the school must ensure that the information is stored securely;
  3. the school must tell you what it intends to do with the information;
  4. unless the law allows it, the school cannot disclose personal information to another person/body.

Providing your consent for the School to use your Child’s Biometric Information

As stated above, in order to be able to use your child’s biometric information, the written consent of at least one parent is required.  As a parent of a child at the school, you will have received a letter notifying you. However, consent given by one parent will be overridden if the other parent objects in writing to the use of their child’s biometric information.  Similarly, if your child objects to this, the school cannot collect or use his/her biometric information for inclusion on the automated recognition system.

You can also object to the proposed processing of your child’s biometric information at a later stage or withdraw any consent you have previously given.  This means that, if you give consent but later change your mind, you can withdraw this consent.  Please note that any consent, withdrawal of consent or objection from a parent must be in writing.

Even if you have consented, your child can object or refuse at any time to their biometric information being taken/used. Your child’s objection does not need to be in writing.  We would appreciate it if you could discuss this with your child and explain to them that they can object to this if they wish.

The school is also happy to answer any questions you or your child may have.

If you do not wish your child’s biometric information to be processed by the school, or your child objects to such processing, the law says that we must provide reasonable alternative arrangements for children who are not going to use the schools biometric recognition systems.

Please note that when your child leaves the school, or if for some other reason he/she ceases to use the biometric system, his/her biometric data will be securely deleted.

If you have any concerns please contact the Data Manager on 0161 624 1484.

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The Blue Coat School is proud to be part of the Cranmer Education Trust

Cranmer Education Trust is a company limited by guarantee and an exempt charity registered in England. Company registration number: 07687709. Registered Office: Cranmer Education Trust, c/o Blue Coat School, Egerton Street, Oldham OL1 3SQ. The website address is and the phone number 0161 785 5082.