GDPR: Act now to protect your school from risk

Arena Group

Arena works with many clients in the education sector, helping them with the common issues they face relating to the management, control and security of their vital documents. In addition to copy and print, and managed print services, Arena Group has developed mstore for Education, its own electronic document and records management system (EDRMS). mstore delivers a user-friendly mechanism to improve the whole document storage, retrieval and archiving process, whilst adding a level of security and functionality to improve legal compliance and the security of critical files.

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Image courtesy of supplier. Image courtesy of supplier.

With new data protection regulations coming into force in May 2018, all organisations, including schools, will need to rethink how they manage personal data in order to comply fully. GDPR, or the General Data Protection Regulation, is designed to bring data protection up-to-date and provide greater protection to the individual. This will place more onerous requirements on schools to manage data well and more rigorously than current regulations permit. Penalties have also increased, making this a critical issue that cannot be swept under the carpet.

Arena experts have already set their minds to the impact on schools, and have developed practical solutions so that schools can start to put their house in order and embark on the journey towards compliance. As a starting point, Arena has published a paper which provides valuable insights into what GDPR will mean for your organisation and some practical steps to take.

For example, essential paperwork, documents and data are at the heart of every school. With changes underway through GDPR, now is the time to act to protect your school from the risk of fines, unwieldy workloads and reputational damage. Schools should ensure a robust IT infrastructure including copy and print devices correctly configured and managed to prevent data breaches. Demonstrating that the school already has solid protocols, policies and practices in place goes a long way to mitigating risk and demonstrating reasonable response to the regulations.

Schools are already benefiting from new ways of working by managing their documents digitally with mstore from Arena. And changing how schools work with documents will also ensure that there’s no more rifling for the right information in response to a subject access (SAR) or freedom of information (FOI) request. Vast, uncontrolled file archives and worry over managing document retention to ensure compliance is a thing of the past. Preparing for OFSTED takes minutes instead of days through managed access. These and other issues that plague SBMs and schools are addressed through a flexible approach to changing the way schools work for the better, with cost savings freeing up vital funds for other activities.

Now is the time to act. And wherever you and your school is on your GDPR journey, the insights shared in this paper should prove a valuable step in ensuring you protect your organisation from risk.

Contact the Arena education team on [email protected], and download the paper for free from the Arena website.

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