back to article No more slurping of kids' nationalities, Brit schools told

Schools have been told not to suck up information on kids' nationalities or country of birth – but historic data will not be deleted. The climbdown, which was predicted earlier this year, was revealed in a guide to the schools census – the statutory survey of students that takes place three times a year – that was published as …

  1. nuked
    Facepalm

    Killing the patient

    The way to prevent the inappropriate use of the data is to stop using it inappropriately; not, to stop the data being collected in the first place. That is backwards.

    1. Alister Silver badge

      Re: Killing the patient

      The way to prevent the inappropriate use of the data is to stop using it inappropriately; not to stop the data being collected in the first place.

      Well no, not necessarily, the gathering of the data might be inappropriate too.

      In today's society, it seems to be the default assumption that you should collect as much data as you can about everything and everybody.

      Sometimes, it would be good if organisations stopped and thought about whether they actually should be doing that, or if they really need to do that.

    2. Smooth Newt Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: Killing the patient

      The way to prevent the inappropriate use of the data is to stop using it inappropriately; not, to stop the data being collected in the first place. That is backwards.

      It's actually the same argument as gun control. Yes you can try to stop people using guns inappropriately, but it is far more effective to not give them guns in the first place. And especially not give guns to people who already have a lengthy history of using them inappropriately.

    3. MrXavia

      Re: Killing the patient

      We are talking about data that is not needed for a school to teach the child....

      So why ask it?

      1. MOV r0,r0

        Re: Killing the patient

        We are talking about data that is not needed for a school to teach the child....

        So why ask it?

        If English is not the first language in their CoB it might be very relevant and not just in their initial years, Autumn terms follow eight weeks where some children don't hear a word of English.

        The data provides evidence to request additional resources or explain academic performance that is lower than expected.

        1. GIRZiM

          Re: Killing the patient

          If English is not the first language in their CoB it might be very relevant and not just in their initial years

          "What language is spoken at home?" does not require "What country were you born in?" to be answered.

          What it most especially doesn't require is for teachers to give it their best guess as to what country they imagine the pupil to have been born in absent categorical data - which is what they were required to do under the legislation.

          1. -tim

            Re: Killing the patient

            "What language is spoken at home?" does not require "What country were you born in?" to be answered.

            It might. Knowing a kid is from Spain means they will speak different Spanish than a Mexican schoolmate. It can also be useful to let teachers know about kids that were from different sizes of a war zone.

            Perhaps a better solution is get the UN to come up with a resolution that makes it illegal along the lines of a war crime to use children in border disputes and make it very clear that the Nuremberg defense isn't an acceptable defense.

            1. GIRZiM

              Re: Killing the patient

              Knowing a kid is from Spain means they will speak different Spanish than a Mexican schoolmate.

              Q: What language is spoken at home?

              A: Spanish.

              Subsidiary Q: Castilian or Latin American?

              No need to know where the kid was born

              It can also be useful to let teachers know about kids that were from different sizes of a war zone.

              I'm guessing you've never been a teacher - trust me, this kind of thing is known by the school without the need for government intervention (unless it's a crap school that is).

              get the UN to come up with a resolution that makes it illegal along the lines of a war crime to use children in border disputes

              That's probably already covered by some directive or other but, if it isn't, then you're right: it should be.

              and make it very clear that the Nuremberg defense isn't an acceptable defense.

              I think that principle was already established at Nuremberg itself ; )

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: explain academic performance that is lower than expected

          actually, I heard (FAKE NEWS?!) that kids with foreign background have _higher_ academic performance :)

        3. Mark 85 Silver badge

          Re: Killing the patient

          That's perfectly valid argument for collection. How else could a school plan for the number of language teachers without input as to "how many"? And why collect it 3 times a year? Why not just once... at the time of student enrollment. I have a bad feeling that this is political correctness running amok.

        4. MacroRodent Silver badge

          Re: Killing the patient

          If the pupil has trouble with English, it is quite obvious to the teachers without asking about nationality. The nationality would be the wrong answer anyway: some pupil from, say, Japan could be quite proficient in English for reasons related to his/her personal history.

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Killing the patient

        "We are talking about data that is not needed for a school to teach the child...."

        Knowing the nationalities of the children in a school could be useful for the allocation of extra or special resources, eg where there may be language difficulties. Who would need this, how it would be used and who has access to it is different to the question of whether it should be collected in the first place

    4. MonkeyCee

      Re: Killing the patient

      "not, to stop the data being collected in the first place. That is backwards."

      If there is no reasonable need for the data in the first place, don't collect it.

      If we apply your reasoning, then any data collection can justify asking anything, as long as they promise not to do anything funny with it.

      So for your next post, please detail your sexual preferences, favorite porn sites, a list of all previous sexual partners and STIs, and a record of which political parties you've voted for. Oh, and your favorite St Petersburg eatery :)

      We assure you that none of this data will be used inappropriately. But totally needs to be collected :)

    5. GIRZiM

      Re: Killing the patient

      And if wishes were horses, nobody would ever need visit a foodbank for want of lasagne again.

      But, sadly, human nature is such that many of those with power abuse it because that is precisely why they sought power in the first place. Appealing to their better nature is waste of time: they don't have one and never will.

      The real world solution, therefore, isn't to get them to pinky-promise not abuse their power but to limit the power they have to abuse.

      The answer is not to enable them only to be "Shocked! ... Shocked, I tell you!" afterwards when the scorpion, all promises to the contrary notwithstanding, stings us, as is its nature, but to not gather the data in the first place - sometimes, nuking the planet from orbit is the only way to be sure.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Killing the patient

      More lies. They might not be collecting the nationality of the child directly anymore, but they haven't stated they aren't using other means (benefit payment information etc) to collate/cross-reference this information, against child school census data. Nationality information could well have been exchanged with Equifax / Experian, so while not stored directly, they now have indirect access to such information via the child's parents.

      They could also be sneakily crosslinking the historical surname data/nationality to make an educated guess using a child's surnames to get an overall picture of the nationality of the children.

      The historical data should to be deleted.

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Killing the patient

      Any Data that could prove to the general populace that they are being replaced by a society with a violent knife toting, incompatible culture that has changed the face and priorities of their schools and Universities, and made the term grooming gangs a household term will be scrapped. 1984 was updated. Enoch Powell was right but you won't have the stats to prove it luv.

  2. The Nazz Silver badge

    Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

    If they are no longer going to collect other "nationalities" data, then stop providing services in any other language, other than academic foreign language classes ie Spanish, German, French etc.

    I am told by my niece, presumably reliably, that at her boys' school, some pupils effectively have full time teachers to teach in their own foreign language whilst the other 34 pupils have to manage with the one teacher.

    IIRC i have also spoken with a teacher whose full time work is taken up with teaching four such pupils.

    All at a time of supposed, i'll repeat supposed, austerity.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

      @The Nazz

      That sounds odd.

      I have seen quite a few kids from Polish native English speaking parents (quite a lot of East Europeans have come to area I am based) go enter the school system (in some cases kids arrived on first day at school with zero English skills, in most. poor English) and they just had to get on with it without any special help.

      Quite a few few factories around where Polish is the shopfloor lingua franca so no instant requirement for parents to be fluent in English as not needed for work

      Though this was an area of "bog standard comps" and govt underfunding for many years (not a Tory voting posh area) so financial pips were squeezed well past squeaking point long before austerity became a thing

      1. Joe Harrison

        Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

        I have heard of this as well, child going to primary school with zero English and nothing special happening in terms of extra teaching provision. The head teacher at the time correctly predicted that the child would pick up English super-quick and so it was. Lady now grown up and totally fluent in both languages without even an accent.

        Agree that useless data should not be collected and that if it has been it should be deleted. There is the famous example of Denmark who for years collected people's religions on official forms all the time as they saw no harm in it. Which there wasn't much - until the Nazis invaded and occupied the country.

        1. MonkeyCee

          Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

          "There is the famous example of Denmark who for years collected people's religions on official forms all the time as they saw no harm in it."

          Maybe the Danish did, but I suspect that you're confusing them with the Dutch.

          The Dutch in fact still do, although you can put what you like on there or not answer. If they round up the pastafarians I'm done for :)

          One of the reasons why the Dutch Jews where so efficiently eliminated was that they where listed in the gementee as J under religion, but also that the Dutch collaborators where both very enthusiastic and well rewarded. Lots of businesses that neglect to mention the change of ownership in 1940 etc...

          It's also why there are very few (relative to last century) Jews in the Netherlands. There's also quite a lot of resistance to any sort of acknowledgement of this. The stolperstein (stumbling stones) are about the only thing that does this, a small brass plaque 10cm a side replacing one of the cobbles outside a house, with the name, date and camp where the previous occupant ended up.

        2. MOV r0,r0

          Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

          nothing special happening in terms of extra teaching

          The class teacher would have been required, with few additional resources, to ensure the child picked up English - even at the expense of the achievement of the rest of the class. Fine with one child, but when it's four or five or six...

          Sounds like your example pupil did OK but you don't mention outcomes for the rest of her class.

    2. MonkeyCee

      Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

      "I am told by my niece, presumably reliably, that at her boys' school, some pupils effectively have full time teachers to teach in their own foreign language whilst the other 34 pupils have to manage with the one teacher."

      No offence to your niece, but no, she's not reliable.

      I hear an AWFUL lot of bad stuff about refugees in the Netherlands. Ignoring all the obvious lies and exaggerations, several people I know who are otherwise quite decent (if a bit up themselves) who did a bit of volunteering for refugees (back when it was cool) who had oodles of stories, about how they get given thousands of euros, that they won't get a job, all these things that where essentially repeats of "they get stuff that locals don't, and are depriving us/our kids of it".

      We're friends with a couple of Sryian families in our neighborhood, and since my wife works for the tax department, she helps them with filing their returns. So she actually has quite a good idea of what the various benefits they gain.

      Firstly, refugees are not allowed to work. Which means they are totally reliant on the state, and risk getting kicked out if they violate that.

      Secondly, they have to do a path to work course (where they learn Dutch among other things). This is both compulsory and costs ~2 grand. There are companies who loan them the money for this, at fairly sharp rates.

      Thirdly, the amount of support is quite variable. One family of five (kids aged 5-10) gets about 60 euro a week to live off, after rent+power is covered. Another family of four gets quite a bit more (150 pw after bills) because they've been relocated from a neighboring town, so get an allowance to cover travel back to see their other family members.

      Lastly, a lot of the grants have a lot of conditions attached to them. So much so, that sometimes it's not worth doing it. "Free" swimming lessons took nearly two hours to do the forms for, by a native speaker. I thought I'd had enough of Dutch bureaucracy, turns out I should be glad I'm not entering the country seeking assistance.

      While the kids don't get any extra teaching resources allocated to them (because they don't need them) their school does get paid extra for taking them.

      I'd be VERY careful with any stuff you hear, since refugees are highly politicized subject. Even though they shouldn't, seeing as they've been through the bureaucratic wringer.

      I also got to see one of their "temporary" camps where they get kept until they can be placed in normal housing. Other than the fact the gates are open during the day, it's a concentration camp. In the woods, 5km from any town, with some trees screening it. It's bloody unsettling to say the least, but I'm one of those bleeding heart liberals who think that we should be using our positions of privilege and power to help those who've been screwed over.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

        "No offence to your niece, but no, she's not reliable.

        I hear an AWFUL lot of bad stuff about refugees in the Netherlands. "

        I'm not sure how your facts about refugees in the Netherlands make the Nazz's niece unreliable wrt teaching in what I take to be a UK school.

        1. MonkeyCee

          Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

          "I'm not sure how your facts about refugees in the Netherlands make the Nazz's niece unreliable wrt teaching in what I take to be a UK school."

          The reason why I picked it apart a bit, is because it's pretty clear bias reinforcing guff. Or fake news as the kids call it these days. Here's the general form:

          - it's always a very clear and simple example of "them" being given stuff, at the expense of "us". No nuance, no complications, no annoying real lifey stuff.

          - it's never a person's direct experience. Often it's deliberately unclear who the primary source is. Is it the niece or the grand nephew? How does a parent know what the teaching is for another child? How does another pupil know?

          - if true, it's often exaggerated for effect. Because it's a story passed from one to another that's natural, but it's become a fable at that point.

          - it often happens to neatly coincide with a person's beliefs, in this case foreign language = bad (or maybe not British)

          I used the refugees as an example because it's something that I have experience with where the stories people tell about them versus the reality vary quite a lot, and are quite clearly a case of people justifying their attitudes*.

          So far several posters have noted that Nazz's story doesn't tally with their experiences of UK schooling, so perhaps he'll be back to enlighten us with which LEA his grandnephews attend to clear things up.

          Oh, and I have known people in the UK education system getting taught in a class of 6 in German. In a private school designed for international students. I've also had classes (in UK secondary) with less than a dozen students in them (maths, history, German), so small classes can exist without there being a special case.

          * the Dutch are more interested in being perceived as being tolerant than actually doing it.

      2. Sam Haine
        Stop

        Conflating refugees and economic migrants

        You're conflating refugees and economic migrants. Refugees are here for humanitarian reasons, economic migrants are here for financial reasons and there are far more of the latter than the former in British schools.

    3. Bavaria Blu
      WTF?

      rural parochialism

      Sounds a bit parochial - people who speak foreign languages, we can't have that!

      Even the Prime Minister seems to have this idea that anyone educated and well travelled is a "citizen of nowhere". Makes her sound like she's never left the village she grew up in.

      1. Lars Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: rural parochialism

        "Even the Prime Minister seems to have this idea.......Makes her sound like she's never left the village she grew up in.".

        The result of a "Enid Blyton" education!.

        1. paulf
          Alert

          Re: rural parochialism

          "Even the Prime Minister seems to have this idea.......Makes her sound like she's never left the village she grew up in."

          Perhaps if she hadn't left the village she grew up in she'd be happily running through wheat fields and the country may have a proper leader* as PM. You know, someone who could stop the growing divisions in the country; whereas the current PM seems unable to unify and lead her own parliamentary party, never mind the rest of the country.

          *Note a criticism of the current lot shouldn't be taken as an implicit approval of the other lot.

    4. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

      I am told by my niece, presumably reliably,

      I wonder where the hell is she and is it in this country or even on this planet, because there is zero foreign language assistant support in any of the schools my kids have attended so far.

      That is so far a total of 3 different primary schools and 2 secondary ones with 50%+ non-English native population in every single one of them.

      So if a LEA in Britain is capable of allocating funds for such assistance, can you please enlighten us where that LEA is. All the ones I know including my local one would grab the torches and the pitchforks for a buccaneer raid on their premises straight away.

    5. Halcin

      Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

      "nationalities" != language spoken

      Place of Birth != language spoken

      My Mother was born in Burma and yet she is English (with an English birth certificate) and her first language is English. I was born in England and have an English birth certificate, but my first language is Cantonese. (Complicated family)

      If you need info on languages spoken then ask about languages spoken. It is clear that the collection of this info has ef-all to do with helping the schools or children. And your suggestion is disingenuous at best

    6. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

      Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

      @The Nazz - I used to feel a tinge of jealousy for the remedial students who got lessons in small groups in a comfortable room, while the top stream got > 30:1 pupil:teacher ratio in standard classrooms, but it was probably the most efficient use of resources in maximising the education outcomes for all students. While your anecdotal report might be accurate, it is an incomplete picture of the situation.

      Also, what is an "academic foreign language class"? Is this restriction to language appropriate for foreign academies? No room for business, vocational or conversational language that might be useful to growing global citizens? "ie Spanish, German, French" - Oh, so it's code for "continued post-colonial dominance by western civilizational".

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

        I work part time in a school to help out, and my wife works full time in the same school.

        Some students do expect that they have some of their cultural preferences considered and expect different treatment. They don't always get it. The nationality data was used (believe it or not) to actually help the students so the school could adequately plan to provide for them and attempt to avoid angry parents coming in yelling because someone didn't do something the way they expected. And yes they do get extra help where needed and the school did seek out Polish language TAs.

        Now if they can't do that then they can all expect to be treated the same I expect a few more complaints from parents.

    7. Sam Haine
      Thumb Up

      Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

      We should charge non-British citizens for use of state education, with an exception for asylum seekers. At present entitlement to state education for economic migrants is based solely on residency and not on whether they are net contributors to the Exchequer.

      I await cries of racism from those in the public sector who use ever increasing demands on public services as justification for their jobs.

  3. Triumphantape

    This will make it harder to see how fast the UK is being invaded, I wonder who financed the fight to remove the policy.

    1. Woodnag

      Invasion?

      The Normans invaded in 1066. And won. So what exactly is 'foreign' and 'british' anyway?

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Invasion?

        The Normans invaded in 1066

        And the French (and Dutch) have conducted small invasions since then - notably unsuccessfully :-)

        It could also be said that the Dutch successfully invaded as part of the Glorious Revolution - as long as you can conflate "invaded" with "invited"..

      2. Kernel

        Re: Invasion?

        "The Normans invaded in 1066. And won. So what exactly is 'foreign' and 'british' anyway?"

        Not to mention the very successful Saxon immigration somewhat earlier.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Re: Invasion?

          The Normans were the ruling landowning class and the start of the aristocracy.

          Nothing to do with the average British pleb apart from virtually enslaving them.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Invasion?

        Which resulted in a dramatic change in culture without the consent of the existing population, and not for the better as far as they were concerned. So isn't it a kinda strange argument to use to support migration?

        1. Missing Semicolon

          Re: Invasion?

          Well indeed. And how does central government plan, without any data?

          The problem with this is, not the lack of data, but the hope that by not measuring the problem, the problem will simply cease to exist.

          There is a distressingly naive part of the population that seems to think that "Nationality" and "The Nation State" is a figment of the imgaination of UKippers and Dad's Army dropouts.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Invasion?

        However it came to be, there is a British culture today. You may not understand your own 'culture', but when a group takes over the UK and forces you abide by theirs, you will. Yours is perhaps the densest comment I have ever read.

        1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          Re: Invasion?

          What - you mean people who voted to leave the EU? Or maybe militant feminists? Since there is no other group with even the slightest possibility of "taking over", or even a desire to, I can only think you are writing hyperbolically. (Seriously, I know which group you are referring to, which means you are merely writing hyper-bollocks.)

  4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "The department intends to use this for research purposes, but has pointed to periodic reviews it will carry out to demonstrate that it won't be retained for longer than necessary."

    Thank you for attending the annual review. Conclusion: still needed. That OK with everyone? Thanks. Please serve the tea and biscuits.

  5. Bavaria Blu

    bound to be poor data

    If a school asks for nationality data, do they then ask for proof? Since we don't have ID cards or compulsory passports I suppose anyone can say they are British. Or do they ask for a birth certificate?

    I do wonder why I have to give accurate information to the state if they don't look after it very carefully. Why can't I use NHS services or state schools telling them I'm John Smith?

    1. MonkeyCee

      Re: bound to be poor data

      "If a school asks for nationality data, do they then ask for proof?"

      Yes.

      "Since we don't have ID cards or compulsory passports"

      Doesn't matter. Like all the hostile environment policies, you have to prove who you are in order to be entitled to have it.

      "Why can't I use NHS services or state schools telling them I'm John Smith?"

      Because fraud.

      In the same way I can't go to the bank, claim I'm Boris Johnson and take out a loan for a couple of million for pocket change and pretty hair.

      You can use emergency services without giving ID (I hope), but anything more than that it's ID time.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What's wrong with using the data for immigration enforcement ?

    You don't expect to walk into a gym that requires membership fees and expect free use of the equipment. It's roughly £5000 a year that it costs per primary pupil rising to £6000 per secondary in the state education system. Free loading and theft.

    Source:

    https://www.ifs.org.uk/uploads/publications/comms/R126.pdf

    1. Joe Harrison

      Yes but going to the gym is optional. Education in UK is compulsory.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >Yes but going to the gym is optional. Education in UK is compulsory.

        Illegals can pay for it privately then, no problem with invited paying guests, gatecrashers not welcome.

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Yes but going to the gym is optional. Education in UK is compulsory

        And is seen (in enlightened quarters) as "investing in the future"..

    2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      It is a well known argument, but it has a few issues:

      First the most basic ones:

      1. You are making the child responsible for the crimes of the parents. That is illegal and immoral. On all accounts - by law, by custom, by common sense.

      2. Education in the UK is compulsory.

      Second the "second order" ones:

      The biggest "civilization" driver has always been education. As Aristotle said once upon a time: “Give me a child until he is 7 and I will show you the man.” That misses the correct context: "OUR" man.

      One of the biggest issues of "invasion by foreign body snatchers" is exactly that - they do not become "OUR" man. They do not integrate and are not assimilated. Making it even more segregated than now is counterproductive in the large game of things.

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        As Aristotle said once upon a time: “Give me a child until he is 7 and I will show you the man.”

        Or, as the Jesuits used to say "give us the child until age five and he'll be ours for life"..

        1. Alistair
          Coat

          @COCM:

          Either they got to me too late or I'm proof that they're wrong.

      2. Alistair
        Coat

        And I'll add to VRH's point:

        It is a well known argument, but it has a few issues:

        It always plays on the irrational fears of those at the bottom of the ladder

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >It is a well known argument, but it has a few issues:

        First the most basic ones:

        1. You are making the child responsible for the crimes of the parents. That is illegal and immoral. On all accounts - by law, by custom, by common sense.

        ----

        Fine, you pay the extra £6k in tax per head. Grow up, state services cost money and somebody has to pay. They are illegals remember so do not pay income tax.

        The trouble with armchair socialists is they love spending other peoples money until it runs out.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          The trouble with armchair socialists is they love spending other peoples money until it runs out.

          This is true but it's morally reprehensible to say it out loud or write it on a website.

      4. TheMeerkat Bronze badge

        Are you saying that illegal immigrants who happened to have a child should not be deported?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > illegal immigrants who happened to have a child

          A child born in Britain of parents who are in the country illegally is still counted as british.

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        All that is fine, but suicidal to the nation without strict border control and fast deportation for those not in the country with permission. If you offer free education, or anything else, to all within the country, you are incentivizing others in the world to get into the country. You will have catastrophic problems if you do not have a plan, e.g., tight borders or a negative incentive to off-set the attraction, to avoid being overwhelmed.

        There are more people in the world lacking basics, like good schooling or decent housing, than developed countries can provide. Sorry, but very true. On a global scale, anyone earning more than £35k are in the world's top one percent in terms of income. We either all live in poverty, or have a way of maintaining enough wealth in some countries to develop ways to help all (and we have taken great strides in doing so, with vast increases in food supplies, availability of clean water, eradication of diseases, etc.). The industrialized countries are facing this choice right now.

        It is very noble, I guess, to want to share everything you have with the world, but it will ultimately hurt everyone.

  7. Bavaria Blu
    Headmaster

    Education is a public good

    Education is good for society, the more there is, the better for everyone. Would you rather foreign children were wandering the streets?

    Children can't help where they are born or where their parents chose to live.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Education is a public good

      >Children can't help where they are born or where their parents chose to live.

      Sorry but that's the lowest of the low using children as a human shield and also teaching children not to obey the Law.

    2. TheMeerkat Bronze badge

      Re: Education is a public good

      Were foreign children “wondering streets” while data was collected?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re:Would you rather foreign children were wandering the streets?

      But isn't half the point of migration to provide unskilled labour to do the jobs that people who've been through the British education system won't do, at rates that they won't work for? That's why we have to keep trawling the world for successive populations of peons, carribean, pakistani, eastern european etc when the previous generations' children refuse to be exploited...

  8. WolfFan Silver badge

    Bah

    So that means that they won't have to record country of origin as Domain and my ethnicity as Wolf, eh? Pity. (For those who don't know... see the Keven & Kell webcomic. You might want to step all the way back to the start in 1995. I always that that Kell was cute and far too good for Kevin.)

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Bah

      ethnicity as Wolf

      Sounds terribly BattleTech[1] to me. Especially if you put "Dragoons" afterwards..

      [1] Played the new game a *lot* - can't wait until they jump forward to the Clan Invasion and I get to pilot OmniMechs again.. I wanna MadCat II

      1. Alt C

        Re: Bah

        Don't you mean Timber wolf?

        IIRC it got that monika in the IS because on first contact with it the battlecomp couldn't work out if it was a marauder or a catapult and kept swapping designation between MAD and CAT

        oh and I'd highly recommend checking out the mods, one brings it upto 3060 tech

  9. spold Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Ummm why keep it as personal info?

    >>> However, historic data that has already been gathered since the policy was introduced in October 2016 will not be deleted. The department intends to use this for research purposes,

    <<<

    Ummm - just anonymise it (Recital 26 of GDPR) - or more likely make it pseudonymized - Article 4(5) of GDPR.

    The research purposes can likely be obtained from the resulting data-set just as easily without retaining it as personally identifiable data. OK you need to check for cell-size (that there are so few people in a category that they can be readily be re-identified), and that there is minimal risk of it being re-identified by reference to other accessible data.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    skewed

    any time I got those form fields to complete, I put something new, or nothing at all. In fact, they did chase me a couple of times, I just told them that I'm not giving them the data (not that they don't know, it's blooming obvious). But because they know I'm always being funny about data and ticking or not-ticking boxes that everybody else just ticks to save 15 sec of their precious life (the FB brigade), the school just ignores such oddball cases like me (God knows if and how they explain it to the council)

    1. Whit.I.Are

      Re: skewed

      I had to fill in the same forms several times for the same school for my kids, so had the impression they didn't save the data anyway. Unless the school thought the kids ethnicity might have changed over the summer holidays - little Johnny was White British last year, but now he's Chinese...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re Unless the school thought the kids ethnicity might have changed over the summer holidays -

        Well, so many other attributes once thought to be immutable are now subject to change on demand that anything is possible...

  11. Reality_Ccheque

    I don't see the problem with collecting and using this data

    School places are expensive. An child's entire education is VERY expensive. For this to be stolen by someone who has no right to be here is an extraordinary theft worth many thousands of pounds. If asking some simple questions to confirm entitlement can stop this theft, then why not?

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