There are a number of laws and codes of practice that affect work in schools. i.Data Protection Act 1998 – Regulates the process of information, i.e. use, obtain, hold and disclosure, relating to an individual. ii.Children Act 2004 – Places a statutory duty on key agencies e.g. schools to safeguard and promote the welfare of children iii.Childcare Act 2006 – Reforms and simplifies early years regulation and inspection arrangements. iv.Freedom of information Act – Public have a statutory right of access to information held by public authorities (e.g. school) v.Human Rights Act – The Human Rights Act came into force on October 2000 and incorporates into UK law certain rights and freedoms set out in the European Convention on Human Rights, e.g. the right to education vi.Health and Safety at Work Act – Ensures the health and safety of all employees in any work activity.
UN Convention on Rights of the Child 1989 – This is an international treaty which grants all children and young people (aged 17 and under) a comprehensive set of rights e.g. Right from discrimination viii.Education Act – The Education Act 2002 clarifies the respective roles of qualified teachers and other staff in school. This was amended in 2005 which brought about changes to the role of the Teacher Training Agency, and allowed the maintained school to receive 3-year budgets based around the academic year.
The 2011 Act helps to create an education system that delivers ever higher standards for all children ix.Special Educational Needs Code of Practice 2001 – The code is to help e.g. schools to make good decisions regarding children with SEN. Under this code, the parents and SEN children now have an increased right not to be excluded from mainstream school and to have one-to-one assistant to support them. x.Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (Equality Act 2010) – Makes it unlawful to discriminate against disabled pupils or prospective pupils e.g. ramps, disabled toilets. The school must also ensure that disabled pupils are not discriminated against in any aspect of school life e.g. school trips.