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Law firm to help schools on GDPR

A law firm specialising in working with the education sector in Shropshire and Herefordshire is holding a series of courses to help schools understand the implications of the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which comes into force in May.

The new act will replace the current UK data protection law and will have a significant impact on all organisations that handle personal data, including schools.

Lanyon Bowdler has put together a training session of practical, detailed guidance, aimed specifically at the education sector to help schools to prepare for and comply with the changes.

William Morse, head of education at Lanyon Bowdler (pictured left), said the sessions would be held at their offices in  Chapter House North, Shrewsbury, on April 24 and Holmer Park Spa & Health Club, Hereford, on May 3.

“Everyone is talking about the change which comes into effect on May 25 but many people are not aware of what they actually need to do about it,” he said.

“We spoke to our clients in the education sector to find out what sort of training they really needed and have put together a training course specifically tailored for maintained and independent schools and academies.

“The sessions will give practical insights on exactly what is needed to prepare for and comply with the new legislation and provide guidance on updating existing policies.

“We have also put together a package of documents to help schools in complying with the new data protection law obligations.

“Our GDPR package includes a Data Audit Template, Data Protection Policy and Privacy notices, Taking, Using and Storing Images of Children policy and a Data Retention Policy.”

The sessions will start at 9.30am with registration, presentations will get under way half an hour later and events will finish at 12.30pm. There will then be a light lunch and the opportunity for people to talk to legal specialists on a one-to-one basis.

The cost of attending one of the events is £50 plus VAT per delegate. To book a place, visit www.eventbrite.co.uk and search “Are You Ready For GDPR” with desired location. Alternatively, telephone Kimmy Forshaw on 01743 280281 or email info@lblaw.co.uk

Meanwhile, a Shropshire accountant warned that businesses must prepare for the new data protection rules that will come into force in just a few weeks – or they face the prospect of multi-million-pound fines.

Marie Bramwell, from Dyke Yaxley Chartered Accountants (pictured bbelow), in Shrewsbury, said businesses needed to act fast.

“The rules will require any organisation that handles the personal information of anyone living in an EU member country to take greater responsibility and ensure the details are protected.

“Your company will also be required to have verified proof of such protection too, so it’s vital that you don’t ignore the regulations.”

Mrs Bramwell said under the new rules, companies must be accountable for their data usage, and must set out strict procedures for processing personal data.

“The new regulations apply to processing carried out by organisations operating in the EU, and also to those offering goods or services to individuals who live in the EU.

“The UK’s decision to leave the EU will not affect the introduction of GDPR, so your business will still need to comply, and it’s essential that you prepare carefully.”

Mrs Bramwell said businesses should review their data privacy and security practices, to help ensure their systems were compliant.

“You may also decide to provide GDPR training for your employees, and review your procedures over client consent – if necessary, you should request fresh consent from your customers so that you have proof they are happy for you to keep their records on file.

“The financial penalties for failing to comply with the rules are huge, with fines costing up to 20 million Euros, or up to 4% of your company’s total annual worldwide revenue, whichever is the greater.

“So you can’t afford to ignore the new rules, and the clock is ticking – they will be here in just a few short weeks, so it’s time to act now.”



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