Privacy notice - free school meals and clothing grant

Who we are

We are a Local Authority established under the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994 and have our Headquarters at Scottish Borders Council, Newtown St Boswells, Melrose, TD6 0SA. You can contact the Customer Advice and Support Service by email or phone 0300 100 1800.

Our Data Protection Officer can be contacted using the contact details above or by emailing

What personal information we are collecting and why

The information we will collect from you:

  • first name
  • last name
  • contact number
  • email address
  • National Insurance number
  • above details for any additional parent or guardian at the same address
  • address
  • date of birth
  • relationship to child/children
  • full name of child/children
  • date of birth of child/children
  • school attending
  • name of bank account holder
  • name of bank
  • bank address
  • account number
  • sort code

We collect personal bank details and proof of your bank account for verification purposes and to allow us to make payment. This information is passed to our Payment Services team in order for them to set you up as a vendor and enable us to make payments to your bank account.

How we will use your information

To determine if you are entitled to receive free school meals or assistance with school clothing. We have a legal duty under the Education (school lunches) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2013 as defined under Part 1 of the Welfare Reform Act 2012 to provide a free meal to all children in the first five years of Primary school and other children whose parents are in receipt of the qualifying benefits. We have a legal duty under Section 54 of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980 to provide help to parents of pupils whose clothing may be inadequate for the purposes of school education.

If you are in receipt of Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction the information you provide may be used to update your claim to ensure accurate entitlement and payment. If you do not provide us with the information we have asked for then we will not be able to provide this service to you.

We may also use the information you provide to determine if you are eligible for any other Financial Assistance.

Who we may share your information with

Your information will be accessed our staff who need to do so in order to provide the service described above. We are legally obliged to safeguard public funds so details will be checked internally for fraud prevention and verification purposes and may be shared with other public bodies for the same purpose.

Personal data provided for applications for services administered and/or provided by us may be shared with, or obtained from the following organisations:

  • Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
  • Her Majesty’s Revenues and Customs (HMRC)
  • Cabinet Office
  • Other Council Services
  • Other Local Authorities
  • Our External Printers - Xerox Business Services and Digital Printing Solutions and CFH Docmail Ltd.
  • Translation and interpreting services when required. These include:
    • Language Line
    • Alpha Translating and Interpreting Services LTD
    • Scottish Borders Interpreter Agency
    • Contact Scotland – BSL
    • Royal Blind – Scottish Braille Press

Your information may also be shared and analysed internally in order to provide management information, inform service delivery reform and similar purposes to meet our duty to achieve best value and continuous service improvement.

In general we do not transfer personal data outside either the UK or the European Economic Area (EEA) and on the rare occasions when we does so we will inform you. We will only transfer data outside the UK and the EEA when it is satisfied that the party which will handle the data and the country it is processing it in will provide adequate safeguards for personal privacy.

Decision Making

We do not use profiling or automated decision-making processes. Some processes are semi-automated (such as anti-fraud data matching) but a human decision maker will always be involved before any decision is reached in relation to you.

Information you have given us about other people

If you have provided anyone else's details on this form, please make sure that you have told them that you have given their information to us. We will only use this information to contact those people to assess your own entitlement to this service. If they want any more information on how we will use their data they can see our privacy statement or email us

How long do we keep your information for?

We currently keep your information without limit of time. There is a project underway to implement deletion of Free School Meal and Clothing Grant information that we hold about you where your entitlement has been cancelled, refused or expired. The full range of circumstances where we will keep or delete information is being decided as part of this project and will be detailed here once the project reaches completion.

Your Rights

You have the right to request access to any personal data held about you by us. You can also request that we restrict the use of your information or even object to any further processing. You can do this by contacting the Data Protection Officer using the contact details provided above. We will respond to your request within 30 calendar days.

For more information on your rights please see our website or if you would like a hard copy of this information, please contact us using the contact details provided above.

How to raise a complaint

We aim to directly resolve all complaints about how we handle personal information. If your complaint is about how we have handled your personal information, you can contact our Data Protection Officer by email or phone on 0300 100 1800.

However, you also have the right to lodge a complaint about data protection matters with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), who can be contacted by

  • post: Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF
  • phone: 0303 123 1113
  • website

If your complaint is not about a data protection matter you can find details on how to make a complaint on our website.