Schools need and welcome positive publicity. Children’s photographs add colour, life and interest to photographs of the school activities and initiatives. Making use of photographs in school publicity materials can increase pupil motivation and staff morale and help parents and the local community identify and celebrate the school’s achievements.
However, photographs must be used in a responsible way. Schools need to respect children’s and parents’ rights of privacy and be aware of potential child protection issues.
CHILD PROTECTION ISSUES
Risk can occur when individual pupils can be identified in photographs. Providing the name and the photograph of a pupil in a publication or on a website allows for the possibility of people outside the school identifying and then contacting pupils directly.
The School has a Child Protection Policy and Parents, children other adults who are aware of any abuse / inappropriate contact with children that may be connected with publicity material should report this immediately to the Principal or Designated Liaison Person.
APPROPRIATE USE OF IMAGES.
St. Cronan’s N. S. adopts the following guidelines when using the photographs of children in school publicity materials, including use of images / names on the school website, newsletters, and displays:
- Teachers will not identify children by name in photographs displayed, in particular when they are provided for publication. The principal will make an informed judgement about what constitutes publication.
- Only photographs of children appropriately dressed are used. This normally means school uniform. Care is taken when using photographs of children participating in sports activities. We do not use photographs of children participating in swimming events.
- We never use the image of a child who is known to be the subject of a court order.
- On some occasions, e.g. a child winning a competition or team playing in a tournament, or a photograph of ‘Junior Infants ’, the local / national newspaper may wish to publish a photograph with the accompanying children’s names. By signing this consent form you as parents or guardians are giving the school permission to name your chil.to
- Staff must ensure that press are made aware of the School Policy and that the Photographer complies with the School Policy.
- Providing parental consent is secured, there is no breach of the Data Protection Act in simply passing on a child’s name to a journalist. If the school / parents are concerned that a newspaper has used the photograph and name of a child inappropriately, they should contact the Press Complaints Commission.
- WEBSITES – When using photographs on websites, the school follows the same rules as other publicity materials. We do not name individual children and identify them in photographs.
- Pupils must not be approached or photographed while at school without the permission of the school authorities.
- PARENTS FILMING / TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS – Parents or other spectators may want to photograph or video at an event such as sports day or the performance of a service or an assembly. This is a valuable part of school life and can be very rewarding for both the family and school. The school reserves the right to ask parents / visitors not to take photographs of children / use videoing equipment if it disrupts an event or the school feels the images may be used inappropriately. Parents are asked to respect the views of others.
- PARENTAL CONSENT – St. Cronan’s N. S. respects the right of parents / guardians to withhold consent from their child’s / children’s photographs being used in school publicity materials. Having read the School Policy on the use of Children’s Photographs, please complete and return to school the attached form to indicate whether or not you wish your child’s / children’s photographs to be used in the way described in this Policy.
Please read, sign and return to School
Use of Children’s Photographs at St. Cronan’s N. S.
Name of Child ____________________________
Date(s) of Birth:
I have read and understood the St Cronan’s School’s Policy Statement on the use of photographs in school. I do / do not give my permission for my child to appear in photographs used for school publicity (including the school website). I understand that my child’s name will not appear with their photograph.
I do / do not give permission for my child to appear in photographs taken to publicise the school by the local press. I understand that permission will be sought prior to publication if the newspaper wishes to include names with a photographs / using videoing equipment if it includes other children or the school is concerned that the use of such equipment is detrimental to the activity taking place.
(Parent / Guardian) Date: _______________________________