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Confidentiality means that details about others should only be disclosed on a need to know basis. Any details of a personal nature will only be disclosed with the consent of the person involved wherever possible. Early Years Solutions recognises that the handling of identifiable information is necessary to the effective functioning of the organisation.  This information can be written, verbal and computerised.  Information is held about individuals using and providing services. This policy helps ensure that Early Years Solutions provides a safe environment where individuals are treated with respect. The aims for the policy are:

·         to comply with legislation such as the Data Protection Act 1998 and the associated Codes of Practice;

  • ensure that information given in trust to Early Years Solutions is treated with respect.
  • ensure that information is protected through clarity about how it is to be stored and shared.
  • ensure that the boundaries of confidentiality are clear, and understood by all
  • to provide practical guidelines;
  • to protect people who use Early Years Solutions services.


The purpose of this policy is to detail the basic standards that Early Years Solutions adheres to and will be reviewed annually.


This policy covers confidential information relating to those who use the services of Early Years Solutions.  It is based on the principle that all such information should be treated as confidential.  Information of this nature should only be shared when there is a clear, legitimate reason for doing so and with the permissions of the parties involved. Although personal/sensitive information is protected by Early Years Solutions there are exceptional circumstances when confidential information would have to be disclosed;
  • where this is necessary to protect a vulnerable child or person from harm
  • or to comply with the law.

Wherever possible and appropriate the person will be informed that this action has been taken.

Legal context

  • The Human Rights Act 1998 guarantees respect for a person's private and family life, home and correspondence.
  • The Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) concerns personal information, which includes facts and opinions about an individual which might identify them. The DPA ensures that information held about any person cannot be used for purposes other than those for which it was originally supplied, without the person’s consent. Exceptions to these Acts are allowed where this is necessary to protect a vulnerable person from harm.
  • Some restricted and specific areas of legislation over-ride the Human Rights Act and the Data Protection Act, for example in the area of suspected terrorist activity or over specific safeguarding concerns.

Confidentiality in Practice

To help children understand the confidentiality policy the following statement is used (as is appropriate)

Early Years Solutions offers a confidential service. This means that usually, anything you want me to keep private will be, but sometimes I will ask to share information with others to in order to help you. Occasionally I may have to ‘break confidentiality’ and tell someone – this means telling someone in a position of authority. This is very rare. I only have to do this if someone is in danger, and needs help. I will only tell the people who need to know

If information for testimonials etc is to be used on Early Years Solutions website full permission must be gained

Availability of the confidentiality policy

The policy is available on the company website www.earlyyearssolutions.co.uk or by request via email or telephone. It is important to encourage those who work with Early Years Solutions to know and understand this policy.

Storage And Disposal Of Information

It is the responsibility of the Early Years Solutions to ensure that personal/sensitive information about service users (individual children, groups and organisations) is treated as confidential and stored in a secure place such as a locked filing cabinet. Such information will be stored only if it is current and necessary to undertake tasks relating to service delivery.

The time limit for storage of general non-active information will be 5 years, where this is a legal requirement to do so.  Information where there is no such legal requirement will be stored for an appropriate period of time, which may, on occasion, be specified.  There may be instances in which information of a personal nature is held longer than 5 years at Early Years Solution's discretion.

Early Years Solutions will shred confidential papers when finished with and delete them from computer files.

Access To Information

Early Years Solutions operates an Open Access Policy in relation to files and computer records, whereby service users have access to information held about them with a notice period of ten working days.

Information regarding service users is confidential but it can often be of benefit to share information with others e.g. other agencies and school, in order to support an individual most effectively. Information will only be shared with the consent of the child (if of an appropriate age to do so) and the parents/carers.

In the case of working with a group, individual group members have the right to access general group files stored at the organisation but not to personal information about other group members. 

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Boundaries Of Confidentiality In Group Supervision

In supervision, confidential information can be discussed relating to professional and, at times, personal issues when they are affecting the individual work.  The supervisor is responsible for treating this information as confidential. The supervisor has the responsibility to ensure that recordings of group supervision sessions are agreed and what will be shared.There is more information in the policy on group supervision.

Related Policies and Procedures

Group Supervision Policy

Implementation Date: 8.1.11

Review Date: 8.1.12

Signed: Anita Soni


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