beta

You're viewing our new website - find out more

Publication - FOI / EIR Release

Referrals made to Disclosure Scotland from boarding schools: FOI release

Published: 28 Nov 2017
Part of:
Public sector

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

FOI reference: FOI/17/02570
Date received: 27 October 2017
Date responded: 27 November 2017

Information requested

Information relating to referrals made to Disclosure Scotland from boarding schools in Scotland.

Response

I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested in the format you asked for.

1. Since 1 January 2012, how many referrals relating to allegations of sexual abuse have Disclosure Scotland received from the boarding schools listed below. Please provide an annual breakdown of figures by calendar year.

With regards to the information held, we are unable to provide the information you have requested because an exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies. This exemption applies to the information requested because the count is so low that making it available could lead to the identification of an individual and is therefore the personal data of a third party. Disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998. This exemption is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest, in disclosing the information, outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

2. Of the referrals in Q1, how many of the individuals referred to Disclosure Scotland were staff at the boarding schools listed below? Please provide an annual breakdown of figures by calendar year.

As this question refers to a subset of Q1 we are unable to provide the information for the same reason as above.

3. Of the referrals in Q1, how many resulted in individuals being added to the children's barred list. Please provide an annual breakdown of figures by calendar year.

As this question refers to a subset of Q1 we are unable to provide the detailed information broken down by year for the same reason as above but we can disclose that the cumulative figure was around 35%.

4. Of the boarding school staff referred to in Q2, how many of these individuals were added to the barred list. Please provide an annual breakdown of figures by calendar year.

As this question refers to a subset of Q1 we are unable to provide the detailed information broken down by year for the same reason as above but we can disclose that the cumulative figure was around 35%.

You did not specify what posts you wanted included within 'school staff'. In searching our records we looked at regulated work posts generally.

5a. Since 2012, how many automatic barring cases (where a person qualifies for autobar due to a caution or conviction for a 'relevant offence') involve allegations of sexual abuse by staff from the boarding schools listed below. This total figure can include autobar with and without representations. Please provide an annual breakdown of figures by calendar year.

The terminology you have used in this question makes reference to the Disclosure and Barring Service which provides a similar, but not identical, service to that provided by Disclosure Scotland. In Scotland, from 28 February 2011, a person convicted of certain offences must be listed in the children's list, and the adults' list held under the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007. These automatic listing offences are specified in a Scottish Statutory Instrument which can be found at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ssi/2010/241/pdfs/ssi_20100241_en.pdf Courts in Scotland must also refer people convicted of relevant offences who are then considered for listing. The relevant offences are listed in paragraphs 1 and 2 of schedule 1 of the PVG Act which can be found at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/asp/2007/14/schedule/1.

Scottish Courts also have a discretionary power to refer (Section 7 of the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007).

We interrogated our systems on the basis of looking for automatic listing offences, relevant offences and discretionary court referrals but we are unable to provide the information because an exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies. This exemption applies to the information requested because the count is so low that making it available could lead to the identification of an individual and is therefore the personal data of a third party. Disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998. This exemption is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest, in disclosing the information, outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

5b. Of the autobar figures referred to in Q5a, how many of these individuals are included in the referral figures requested by Q1 & Q2? Please provide the figures relating to Q1 and Q2 as separate figures, and provide an annual breakdown by calendar year.

There were no cases that met the criteria stipulated in your question.

6a. Since the start of the PVG Scheme in 2011, how many times has Disclosure Scotland had to notify any of the schools listed below about new information which suggests that an individual may no longer be suitable to work in a regulated work setting. This question refers to the number of updates made to schools.

Since the start of the PVG Scheme in 2011, Disclosure Scotland has made 7 notifications to schools on the list you provided.

6b. Of the figures in question 6a, how many teachers were the subject of these updates? (due to a potential change in their suitability).

We are unable to provide the information you have requested because an exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies. This exemption applies to the information requested because the count is so low that making it available could lead to the identification of an individual and is therefore the personal data of a third party. Disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998. This exemption is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest, in disclosing the information, outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

6c. Of the teachers referred to in question 6b, how many were subsequently added to Disclosure Scotland's Children Barred list.

As this question refers to a subset of Q6(a) we are unable to provide the information for the same reason as above.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why that exemption(s) applies are explained in the Annex to this letter.

Reasons for not providing information

An exemption applies.

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies to the information you have requested. because the count is so low that making it available could lead to the identification of an individual and is therefore the personal data of a third party. Disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998. This exemption is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest, in disclosing the information, outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG

Published:
28 Nov 2017
Referrals made to Disclosure Scotland from boarding schools: FOI release