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Scottish teachers advised to break law by ‘outdated’ Named Person advice

February 2019

Simon Calvert
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The Scottish Government has again come under fire for its controversial Named Person scheme, and Education Minister John Swinney has been advised to drop it altogether.

The No To Named Persons (NO2NP) campaign says teachers are being encouraged to break the law by ‘outdated’ guidance on sharing pupils’ information.

The group wrote to the Education Minister to point out that sex education guidance referring to Named Person is yet to be updated, despite being ruled unlawful in July 2016.

The guidance claims teachers must share a pupil’s private information with the child’s Named Person if it ‘affects or is likely to affect’ the child’s wellbeing.

It says that such a breach of privacy would be legally acceptable, saying ‘the right to privacy is not an absolute right’.

However, when the UK Supreme Court reviewed the scheme in 2016, it ruled that it breached parents’ human rights.

NO2NP spokesman Simon Calvert said the guidance ‘tells teachers they have a duty to share private information at the threshold of wellbeing, the very thing deprecated by the Supreme Court’.

He added: ‘Two and a half years after the ruling there has still been no attempt to update it. There is no note attached, warning teachers that its legal advice about data sharing is dangerously wrong’.