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Childcare funding privacy notice

Checking eligibility for a free childcare place for a two year old, the Early Years Pupil Premium for three and four year olds, and a 30 hours childcare place for three and four year olds

Gateshead Council connects to the Department for Education's Eligibility Checking System (ECS) via an external software provider to check eligibility for:

  • two year old free childcare
  • Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP) for three and four year olds
  • 30 Hours Extended Childcare for three and four year olds

This enables local parents to check on-line via a link hosted on the Gateshead council website, to see if their child is eligible for a free two year old childcare place.

Local childcare providers and schools are able to view children's eligibility for EYPP and to confirm the validity of a child's 30 Hours Childcare unique eligibility code.

To enable a two year old check to be carried out on line by the parent/carer they are required to enter certain personal details including the parent's:

  • name
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number or their National Asylum Support Service number

The online check cannot be carried out without this information. Parents are also asked to provide contact details, the name and date of birth of the relevant child/children and where applicable, the name of the childcare provider currently being attended by said child. This information enables the system to disseminate an appropriate response following system mediation of the eligibility check.

The local authority may use this information to follow up on cases, ensuring that an eligible child already attending childcare is accessing their entitlement free of charge or that a parent/carer with an eligible child, who is not already attending a setting, is provided with support, where necessary, to find an appropriate childcare place.

Please note: The following two year old eligibility checks cannot be performed online:

  • child is looked after or has left care through a child arrangement order, special guardianship or adoption
  • child has a current statement of special educational needs/an education, health and care plan or attracts Disability Living Allowance
  • if you are outside of the borough.

We may also collect anonymous information, such as your computer's IP address to enable us to identify and report any suspicious eligibility checks. An Internet Protocol (IP) address is the numeric address of a computer and is determined by your internet service provider. It is different to your house address and although we can determine a rough geographic location from it, we cannot use it to identify you personally. We use the IP address to identify individual computers. In the event of serious criminal misuse of the internet, your internet service provider and the police may be able to use your IP address to identify you.

If HMRC have confirmed a child is eligible for 30 Hours Extended Entitlement by issue of a unique code, the chosen childcare providers or school will need to reconfirm the validity before funding can be allocated to the child/children.

These reconfirmations are carried out by the provider/school using an online provider portal hosted on a Gateshead Council server. Before the code can be checked the provider/school must enter the following information on to the system:

  • Unique Eligibility Code
  • Child Date of Birth
  • Parent/Carer National Insurance Number

It is optional to enter parent/carer forename and surname and or partners forename, surname and National Insurance number.

When funded hours are claimed by a provider/school, they must use the provider portal to enter the following which is electronically submitted to the local authority:

Child details
Forename, surname, date of birth, gender, ethnicity, Special Educational Needs Code of Practice stage, address Line 1 and postcode, start and end date, number of weeks attended in term, whether they are nominated for Disability Access Fund, universal hours per week, extended hours per week, non funded hours per week, 30 hours eligibility code if claiming extended hours and attendance days.

Parent/Carer details
Are optional unless you are claiming 30 hours extended entitlement or requesting an early years pupil premium check, in which case the following information is required: Parent/carer forename, surname, date of birth, National Insurance number or their National Asylum Support Service number. The same partner details are optional.

Data (eligibility code, parent/carer national insurance number and child's date of birth) is used to run an audit at least six times a year to enable the local authority to identify which children may no longer be eligible for 30 Hours Childcare funding for the following term. The result of these audits will update the information held within the database and will subsequently update the school or childcare provider(s) where the child is attending. This will also be shared amongst relevant departments within the Council e.g. finance department.

Funded hours data, assists the Local Authority to administer and distribute accurate funds, complete annual census returns and assess sufficiency take up of 2 and 3 / 4 year olds places across the borough.

When checking the validity of a child's 30 Hour Childcare Unique Eligibility Code, a school or childcare provider must receive prior consent from the parent/carer. It is the responsibility of the parent/carer to regularly reconfirm the eligibility of the child's unique code with HMRC.

Gateshead Council may use the data captured on these systems to ensure the accuracy of records across the Local Authority and to check against fraud. Gateshead Council is required by law to protect the public funds it administers. We may share information given to us with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public money to help prevent and detect fraud. Regarding free childcare for two year olds and the early years pupil premium, the data collected from the on-line form is stored by the council's Early Years and Childcare Service in a secure server.  As well as passing this data on to registered childcare providers and schools, they may also share this data with staff from other parts of the Council, for example, Children's Centre staff, to enable them to support parents to access childcare provision whilst meeting the legal requirements of the Data Protection Act. To keep this information safe, we have policies and procedures in place.

If you require further information regarding Gateshead Council's Data Protection Policy then please visit the Data Protection webpages. Gateshead Council's nominated representative for the purposes of the Data Protection Act and the named Data Protection Officer is Tanya Rossington. You can contact the Data protection Officer DPO@gateshead.gov.uk.

How you can access, update or correct your information

The Data Protection law gives you the right to apply for a copy of information about yourself. This is called a 'Subject Access Request'.  Find out more on how to make a Subject Access Request.

The accuracy of your information is important to us to be able to provide relevant services more quickly. We are working to make our record keeping more efficient.  In the meantime, if you change your address or email address, or if any of your circumstances change or any of the other information we hold is inaccurate or out of date, please email us at informationrights@gateshead.gov.uk  or write to us at:

Information Rights Officer
Gateshead Council
Civic Centre
Gateshead
NE8 1HH

Your information choice and rights

Please see the relevant section of the Corporate Privacy Notice.

Information Commissioner's Office

The Information Commissioner is the UK's independent body set up to uphold information rights.

If you would like to know more about your rights under the Data Protection law, and what you should expect from us, visit the Information Commissioner's website.

If you have any concerns regarding our privacy practices or about exercising your Data Protection rights, you may contact the Information Commissioner's Office:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

0303 123 1113 or 01625 545 745
casework@ico.org.uk

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