Privacy notice: Bedfordshire Employment and Skills Service

Data Protection and Privacy Statement

Your privacy

Central Bedfordshire Council is committed to protecting your privacy when you use our services.

This Privacy Notice explains how BESS uses information about you and how we protect your privacy.

Why do we need your personal information?

We use the information that we gather about you via our enrolment forms to:

  • report to the Government’s Education and Skills Funding Service (ESFA) on the learners that we are delivering to on their behalf
  • to ensure that we are complying with the rules and regulations around who is, or isn’t eligible to undertake one of our courses
  • enrol you with awarding bodies if the course that you are undertaking with us requires one or more examinations to be taken
  • later contact you to see whether the course that you have undertaken with us has helped you gain employment or progress within your work
  • to monitor the quality of our courses
  • ensure that you get the right support if you have told us that you have a physical or learning disability
  • help investigate any worries or complaints you have about your services
  • to ensure that we are reaching as many learners and communities as possible

How the law allows us to use your personal information

Information collected and used for the administration and evaluation of courses and to ensure that the funding we receive from ESFA is spent correctly is used on the basis that it is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest.

Other information, such as where you have contacted us with a general query, will be processed on the basis that you have given your consent for us to do so. Consent can be withdrawn at any time by contacting

Where we collect ‘special category data’ (information which reveals your racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, trade union membership, religious or philosophical beliefs, health or sexual orientation) this will be processed on the basis it is necessary for reasons of substantial public interest – specifically; statutory and government purposes and to ensure equality of opportunity or treatment.

Who do we share your information with?

The organisations with whom we currently share your information are:

  1. the organisation that is providing the funding for your course. Currently, the only external organisation to do this is the Government’s Employment and Skills Agency who have engaged us to deliver your learning and collect your data for them. View the ESFA’s Privacy Notice
  2. learning course providers who are contracted by Central Bedfordshire Council to deliver courses to you. Where we have these arrangements, there is an information sharing agreement in place to make sure that the organisation complies with data protection law
  3. awarding bodies with whom you have to be registered to take the examinations associated with your courses
  4. Welfare Call with whom we share your contact and course details so that they can call you 3 to 6 months after you have finished your course to see whether you have moved into employment or changed your job. This helps us to see how effective our courses are at helping people into employment or progressing with their employers

We may also share your personal information where it is lawful for us to do so. This may include, for example, sharing:

  • in order to find and stop crime and fraud
  • if there are serious risks to the public, our staff or to other professionals
  • to protect a child or vulnerable adults

How long do we keep your personal information?

We will keep your personal information for a minimum of 6 years, in line with ESFA rules.

For more information about how the Council uses your data, your rights and who to contact if you have any concerns please see the Council’s main privacy notice.