The GDPR that stole communion…

Some schools in Ireland have been banning photographs at communion, citing GDPR.

The Irish Data Protection Commission clarified in a guidance titled “Taking Photos at School Events: Where Common Sense Comes Into Play” that this is not mandated by GDPR.

  • Taking a photo in public is generally fine; it’s what you do with that photo that can potentially become a data protection issue.
  • If a school is seeks consent from a parent or guardian to photograph their child at school events, the school should provide a clear and accurate account of the types of school events that photographs will be taken at, what these photos are going to be used for and by whom, where these photos are going to appear and how long they will be kept. Parents/guardians should be told they have a right to withdraw their consent at any time.
  • Schools may find it easier to request this consent from parents/guardians at the beginning of each school term or year.
  • GDPR does not apply to parents taking photos of kids as a memento, even if they subsequently post them on social media. If you post a picture that includes another child, take it down if requested by the child’s parent.

Read the full text of the guidance.