Privacy Policy

Privacy Notice

The Welding Academy takes the protection of your personal information very seriously. ​ For the purposes of the Data Protection Act, the data controller is The Welding Academy. Our ICO registration is ZA291240. The following statements outline the data we collect and why and who this may be shared with.

Data We Process – Learner information (including Prospective Learners)

We will collect and process your name, address, date of birth, gender, nationality, parent/guardian contact names, phone number, email address, learner support needs, medical information, education history, qualifications, references, ethnic origin, employment history, attendance data, and other relevant information for the purposes set out below.

  • Learner application to the Academy

We will use your details for the fulfilment of the Academy’s contractual relationship with its Learners and for our public task to deliver educations programmes, this includes to determine and apply admissions criteria, process applications for admission, and monitor overall Learner numbers.

We will ask for details of any criminal convictions or offences. We do this to identify any learners who may need additional support and in some cases, review whether a learner may pose a risk to the safety or security of other learners, teachers or our premises. In some cases, we may reject a learner’s application due to disclosure, but this is rare, and we have a panel that would meet to review each case before this decision is made. If a learner declares a criminal record or a DBS reveals a criminal record which is likely to cause the learner to be unable to complete some mandatory element of the course, a place cannot be offered. This data is kept securely and separate from general learner records and is only available to identified staff from the safeguarding team.  If you don’t provide information about a criminal conviction or offence and this is later disclosed to us, it may result in removal from a specific course or exclusion from the Academy.

Parents/guardians, Schools, Academy’s, Local Authorities, Youth Support and associated services may contact us to request that we confirm the status of a Learner’s application and the course they have applied for. We will share this information unless you inform us not to, please contact the Admissions Team, email:

  • Learner performance and attendance at the Academy

We will use your details to fulfil our learning agreement with you and for our public task to deliver educations programmes. We will use your information for setting assessments, marking/grading assessments, reviewing marks/grades awarded in response to notifications of mitigating circumstances, conducting meetings of examination boards, determining awards and classifications.

The Learner Services Team will use the information gathered to identify support needs and any required reasonable adjustments. Where appropriate support plans will be negotiated with the Learners and shared with designated staff to inform teaching, and support strategies, the Learner Services Team will receive Education, Health and Care Plans and other educational and/or medical documentation from parents, schools, health professionals and local authorities and will identify Academy staff whom these will need to be shared with.

To enable the Learner Services Team may actively contact parents and other relevant professionals to make a request for information relating to educational support needs. These will be shared with the Academy to help inform support plans. These plans will be shared with identified academic and support staff.

It is Academy policy that staff may contact named parents/guardians of Learners under the age of 18 during their course to discuss academic progress, attendance, welfare concerns and conduct. Learners who do not wish the Academy to make such contact may be granted an exemption by writing to the Principal at the commencement of their course.

  • Work-Based Learners

Where you are undertaking an Apprenticeship course whilst working for an employer, we will share your name, address, progress, attendance, learning plans, progress in learning, assessment plans and qualification results with your employer. Your employer will also share relevant information with us. In this, the Academy and the employer are each acting as Data Controllers, and you should review the employers Privacy Notice and Data Protection policies (where appropriate).

  • Work Experience Placements

We will process Learners’ name, date of birth, parent’s details, emergency contact details, course details and any health, well-being and educational needs so that we can facilitate a work experience placement. We will use this information to confirm Learner placement details with their parent and the employer. We will also use the details to conduct risk assessments on placements and monitor attendance. We will share this personal data with the prospective work experience employer and with Changing Education support the delivery of our work experience programme and provide work experience software.

  • Higher Education

Where learners are enrolled on programmes of study which are delivered by both the Academy and a University Partner leading to an award from the University, the Academy and the University will process the learner’s details for the following purposes:

  • Administering applications and admission to, enrolment on, delivery of and participation on a Programme, including ensuring suitability for the Programme, administration of assessments and examinations, the issue of results and certificates, awards and (where applicable) the provision to an employer or other sponsors of information about attendance and   performance
  • Provision of teaching, research, educational and other services, facilities and support and the protection of health, safety and welfare whilst on Programme (which may involve the disclosure of personal data to the Students’ Union, health service providers, staff and other third parties)
  • Implementation of academic regulations, practices, codes, policies and procedures
  • Issue and operation of ‘Smart Card’ or equivalents, serving as a means of identification and means of access to services and facilities, including libraries, computing facilities and car parks and to facilitate purchases, discounts and special offers
  • Monitoring of attendance and performance and the provision of targeted learning support
  • Administration of the financial aspects of a learner’s Programme, sponsors or funders including the collection of fees and any other monies due
  • Equal opportunities monitoring and the provision of reasonable adjustments or other entitlements under equality law
  • Graduation, career follow-up and alumni activities
  • For statistical and research including internal and statutory reporting purposes
  • To enable effective communication, including providing information relating to University services and products, funding and/or sponsorship opportunities
  • Provision of references
  • Further information on how learners personal data will be processed by the University will be available in the University’s Privacy Notice.Learner Health and Social Care Information

The Academy will also ask for information about health problems, such as allergies, conditions such as asthma or diabetes and recording that a Learner is pregnant. We will use this information to cater for special dietary needs, so that we can respect and facilitate a Learner’s religion, for health and safety reasons including prior to taking Learners on a field trip and as part of pastoral duties. This information will be used to inform support plans which will be shared with the appropriate staff.

We may share this personal data with third parties such as another Academy where a Learner is taking part in an exchange program. Where appropriate we will ask for explicit consent to process this information; however, we may also rely on other legal bases to process this information including processing the data to protect the Learners or another individual’s vital interests.

We will also collect details about learning difficulties or disabilities where you apply for financial support or a bursary.

– Exams and Assessments

The Academy is an approved centre for a range of awarding bodies. Depending on the learner’s course, personal data will be shared with these awarding bodies. These awarding bodies include:
– City & Guilds

Awarding bodies may be required to provide a candidate’s personal data to educational agencies such as DfE, WG, DE, The Skills Funding Agency, regulators, HESA, UCAS, Local Authorities, EFA and Learning Records Service (LRS). Additionally, candidates’ personal data may be provided to a central record of qualifications approved by the awarding bodies for statistical and policy development purposes. Awarding bodies maintain a comprehensive archive record of candidates’ examination results. The objective is to provide an audit trail of the results certificated and to maintain an accurate record of an individual’s achievements. It is the responsibility of centres to ensure that candidates are made aware of this.
For full details of each awarding bodies, privacy notice can be found on their websites.

  • Delivery of services by other providers

The Academy uses sub-contractors for the delivery of some of its courses and programs. As such these third parties have access to Learner personal details including name, address, date of birth, gender, nationality, parent/guardian contact names, phone number, email address, learner support needs, medical information, education history, qualifications, references, ethnic origin, employment history, attendance data, and other relevant information.

Appropriate contracts will be implemented with these sub-contractors as data processors to ensure they process personal data in line with the law.

Data We Process – General

  • Submission of your information to the ESFA

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is an executive agency of the Department for Education (DfE). Data about you will be supplied to ESFA for the purposes set out in their Privacy Statement available here: link

  • References

The Academy may share personal details including name, attendance details, courses completed and results with Higher Education providers and/or employers on receipt of a reference request.

  • Financial Details

We will collect bank details if we need to administer any charges or refunds relating to courses or training programs. We may also process your bank details and information about Income Support, Universal Credit, Employment Support Allowance and Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence payment where you apply for or receive financial support or a bursary. We will share your name with the Academy bank if there is a problem with the payment, and our auditors have access to our payment records.

  • Academy Transport

We will collect the names, addresses and contact details of Learners and Learner parents/guardians who apply to use the Academy transport services. We collect this data to ensure the safe arrival of all our Learners. For example, we may contact you or your parent/guardian in the event of some disruption to services or due to an emergency, bad weather or accident. We will share a passenger list with the bus companies so that the drivers can check Learner ID and bus passes on embarkation. A photo of learners may sometimes be shared with the bus company/driver so that they are aware of learners with any additional needs or if a learner is not permitted to use transport services, e.g. due to issues with behaviour.

  • Debt Collection

We may pass the personal details of individuals who have not paid the course fees or other payments owed to the Academy to debt collection agencies who act on our behalf so that they can retrieve the outstanding amount owed.

  • CCTV and Images

The Academy uses CCTV on its premises and will also collect your photograph for the purpose of identifying and protecting our Learners, staff and premises. This data may be shared with the Police and other agencies where the Academy is required or permitted to do so by law.

Your photograph or video may also be taken and used as part of a promotion of the Academy events or activities taking place at the Academy. You will be informed if photographs or video is being taken so you can refrain from being included if you wish to.

  • Marketing

Where you have previously studied at the Academy or commenced an application process, then we may send you information about future courses and learning opportunities we provide on the basis of our legitimate business interests. In doing so, we will comply with the requirements of the “soft opt-in” and offer you an opportunity to refuse marketing when your details are first collected and in subsequent messages (by way of an unsubscribe).

  • Gym use

Where you become a member of the gym or use any of the Academy exercise facilities for recreational use, we will ask you to provide your personal details alongside completing a health questionnaire.

  • Hair, Beauty and Hospitality

If you use any of our facilities including acting as a model or receiving massage treatments, we will collect your personal information, including any health-related information that we may require.

Data We Process – Parent/Guardians information

If your child is under the age of 18 years old at the start of their studies, we require them to provide your (parent/guardian) name, email and phone number. We collect this information to support the communication with potential Learners during the application process and to keep you informed about your child’s performance and attendance.

We will also use the contact details of our learner’s parents/guardians to send postal marketing materials highlighting the range of courses and qualifications offered by the Academy and the career options that may be available to the learner. If you do not wish to receive such marketing materials, please contact us to opt-out.

Data We Process – Job applicants, current and former employees

The information we ask for is used to assess your suitability for employment. You don’t have to provide what we ask for, but it might affect your application if you don’t.

  • Application stage

We ask you for your personal details, including name and contact details. We will also ask you about your previous experience, education, referees and for answers to questions relevant to the role you have applied for. Our recruitment team will have access to all of this information.

You will also be asked to provide equal opportunities information. This is not mandatory information – if you don’t provide it, it will not affect your application. This information will not be made available to any staff outside of our recruitment team, including hiring managers, in a way which can identify you. Any information you do provide will be used only to produce and monitor equal opportunities statistics.

  • Shortlisting

Our hiring managers shortlist applications for interview. They will not be provided with your name or contact details or with your equal opportunities information if you have provided it.

Candidates are asked to provide proof of identity and qualifications at the interview. Photocopies of original documents are only retained if the candidate is successful.

If you are unsuccessful for the position you have applied for, your data will be held for a period of six months in case of any queries regarding the outcome or for feedback purposes.

  • Conditional offer

If we make a conditional offer of employment, we will ask you for information so that we can carry out pre-employment checks. You must successfully complete pre-employment checks to progress to a final offer. We are required to confirm the identity of our staff, their right to work in the United Kingdom and assess suitability for the role.

You will, therefore, be required to provide:

  • Proof of your identity – you will be asked to attend our office with original documents, we will take copies, if not already provided.
  • Proof of your qualifications – you will be asked to attend our office with original documents, we will take copies, if not already provided.
  • You will be asked to complete a criminal records declaration to declare any criminal convictions.
  • We will require you to complete an application for a Criminal Record check via the Disclosure and Barring Service – you will be asked to attend our office with original documents, we will take copies, if not already provided.
  • We will contact your referees, using the details you provide in your application, directly to obtain references
  • We will also ask you to complete a questionnaire about your health, which may, if necessary, be reviewed by our Occupational Health Unit. This is to establish your fitness to work.

Upon commencement of your employment, we will also ask you for the following:

  • Bank details – to process salary payments
  • Emergency contact details – so we know whom to contact in case of an emergency at work
  • Employment status for tax code purposes

Our contract of employment requires all staff to declare if they have any potential conflicts of interest, other employment or engagement. If you complete a declaration, the information will be held on your personnel file.

Data We Process – Volunteers

The Academy will collect and record you for your personal details, including name and contact details. We will also ask you about your previous experience, education, referees and for information in support of your application. We will also keep on file proof of your identity, e.g. original documents such as passport or driving licence and proof of qualifications. You may be asked to complete a criminal records declaration to declare any convictions. We may also ask about any disability, health issue or factor which may affect your ability to work with us.

Data Security

We have put in place appropriate security measures to prevent your personal data from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way, altered or disclosed. In addition, we limit access to your personal data to those employees, agents, contractors and other third parties who have a business need to know. They will only process your personal data on our instructions, and they are subject to a duty of confidentiality.

We have put in place procedures to deal with any suspected personal data breach and will notify you and any applicable regulator of a breach where we are legally required to do so.

Use of Data Processors

Data processors are third parties who provide elements of our services for us. This means that they cannot do anything with your personal information unless we have instructed them to do it. They will hold it securely and retain it for the period we instruct.

Retention of Records

We retain the personal data processed by us for as long as is considered necessary for the purpose for which it was collected (including as required by applicable law or regulation).

As a general guide:

  • Learner (including parent/carer) details: will be retained for 6 years after completion of studies or withdrawal from a course. In some cases, for example, to comply with the UK or European funding rules, we are required to keep records for much longer.
  • Nursery children and parents all data will generally be retained for 25 years
  • Volunteer data: is usually kept for 6 years after the volunteer has finished working with us
  • Employee data: all data will be retained for 6 years with limited data retained until the employee’s 75th birthday (as required for pension administration)

The Academy has a Retention Schedule which sets precisely the detail of retention timescales. For more information on how long information will be retained, please contact our Data Protection Officer.

Your Rights

Data Protection law provides the following rights for individuals:

  1. The right to be informed
  2. The right of access
  3. The right to rectification
  4. The right to erase
  5. The right to restrict processing
  6. The right to data portability
  7. The right to object
  8. Rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling.

You may ask us at any time for information about any personal data we hold about you, or you may request that we correct or delete that information. Where you ask us not to contact you again or to delete the information we may need to retain limited information to respect those wishes.

Where we are relying on your consent as a condition for processing your personal data, you may revoke your consent to the processing of your data by contacting us.

We may disclose your personal information in circumstances where we have reason to believe that disclosing this information is reasonably necessary to comply with the law or we have another legal basis for doing so.

Complaints or queries

Cheshire Academy South and West tries to meet the highest standards when collecting and using personal information. If you want to make a complaint about the way we have processed your personal information, please contact our Data Protection Officer: Heather Backstrom, ​

In the event, you are not satisfied with the use of your personal data you have the right to contact the data protection regulator, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)

Third-party links

This website may include links to third-party websites, plug-ins and applications. Clicking on those links or enabling those connections may allow third parties to collect or share data about you. We do not control these third-party websites and are not responsible for their privacy statements. When you leave our website, we encourage you to read the privacy notice of every website you visit.

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