Evarist Bartolo now has direct access to personal school data about pupils, by means of Legal Notice 76

Published: April 9, 2014 at 12:09pm

Antonio Ghio

Antonio Ghio, former chairman of the Malta Communications Authority, has written about this subject on his blog. The link is below.

27 Comments Comment

  1. admin says:

    And then there’s this to frame it in context – a judgement of the European Court of Justice on the subject of data retention:


    • kev says:

      It’s the only time the ECJ has ever blocked any tyrannical EU legislation of the sort – and only because Germany refused to implement the directive (the ghost of the Gestapo still haunts them).

      I must have missed your protestations when the data retention directive was being processed through the EP and Council. If I recall well enough, Gonzi made quite a fuss at the Council, and The People were all out in the streets. TVM banged on about it for months on end.

      • kev says:

        Ah, and those passionate speeches by our MEPs defending our privacy in the European Parliament… That must have been their finest hour.

      • Antoine Vella says:

        And we have to ghost of the SMU and the Mintoff regime to deal with, Kev.

    • kev says:

      Here’s more about the ECJ’s ruling on the tyrannical EU Directive – http://euobserver.com/news/123791

      Let’s hope our parliament now revokes this piece of EU shite.

  2. Tabatha White says:

    Don’t expect people who don’t see straight to be able to visualise the real impact and consequences.

  3. M. Cassar says:

    One wonders how long it will be before we find out what the REAL purpose of this regulation is.

    May I ask anyone who has conducted research whether they have ever taken note of the population’s ID card numbers or names? Is this another ‘adjustment’ to codes of ethics?

    • FP says:

      Absolutely no personally identifiable data is required for research. Full stop. The minister seems to want to feed pure unadulterated bullshit to the masses.

      Ghio states that “The statements made that LN76/2014 is solely required for research purposes really contrasts with the requirements to provide an ID Card number under the same legal notice.”

      Contrasts it surely does.

      If the minister insists on the collection of the ID card number together with the other students’ information, then he definitely wants this data FOR PURPOSES OTHER THAN RESEARCH.

    • La Redoute says:

      Identity Malta concentrates ALL data on ALL residents/citizens held in ALL government databases and databases to which government has direct access.

      The implications of that no so minor detail were lost in the screaming row about the sale of citizenship.

      • Tabatha White says:

        Which means that Joseph Muscat goes through Manwel Mallia for details or does he have his own key to the info?

        What about Keith Kasco?

    • me thinks says:

      No research is ever conducted requesting an ID card number. Furthermore any research done has to be accompanied by a signed consent form and in the case of universities the questions asked have to be approved by an ethics board before consent is granted.

  4. La Redoute says:

    I can’t help thinking we’d be better off if he scrutinised teaching staff, rather than their pupils.

    • Pat Zahra says:

      Here we go again.

      What makes you think we’re not scrutinised?

      We get lightning inspections from education officers a couple of times a year (I have been teaching for 25 years and I was inspected last week).

      The head and assistant heads patrol corridors. Parents phone up to complain about something every single day and then the head calls you into her office and asks for your side of the story.

      If you happen to be in your first year you’re overseen by an assistant head as well as a mentor.

      At university you’re seen by tutors and by the teacher whose classes you’ve taken.

      Throughout your course of studies you are inspected over and over again and you are accountable.

      I know B.Ed students who have been failed simply because of their classroom attitude.

      The children are so well-versed in their rights that they fly off to complain to the Head at the slightest provocation.

      If there’s more than a normal level of noise coming out of your room an assistant head will come in and want to know why.

      Last year I got a major telling off because I said “That’s a stupid thing to do!’ to a child. because you cannot call a child, or anything it does, stupid.

      A few years ago I was called in to explain why I used the word ‘bloody’ in class. As it happened I was quoting Duncan ‘what bloody man is that…’ and an absent-minded student just latched onto the b word and trotted off to the office.

      You have to hand in your schemes of work. You have to keep a forecast and a record of work and of marks and a daily diary, all of which can be asked for at any moment.

      You have to take attendance in every lesson and be able to account for everyone. You cannot send anyone out of class.

      You have to dress appropriately and if the head doesn’t like what you’re wearing you’re sent home to change and on and on and on. Not scrutinised, my foot!

      • WhoamI? says:

        And then you get 10 weeks off or whatever in summer. Plus all the other holidays for whatever excuse and reason.

        Most of what you mentioned happens in other work settings. You can’t dress inappropriately; you can’t use the wrong language; you have workloads to submit; many take work home too or work till late. X’qed tahseb? Li f’office kulhadd 9 to 5 jew?

        Aqtghuha din li tahsbu li qed taghmlu xi pjacir lil xi hadd.

        Int ghazilt il-job issa ghamlu inkella ieqaf eqred u dabbar rasek. But you’ve been doing it for 25 years ma nahsibx li iddejjaqt.

      • Fed up with rants says:

        Yes it is called accountability, that is what you are paid to do.

        Judging by the way the teachers have behaving in the past couple of days, no wonder the education in this country is down the drain.

        All you teachers do is nag nag nag. You want to work and have the easy way out because you do not want to work hard and go the extra mile. It seems that you what free reign to do what you want with one of the most vulnerable groups in society.

        If you can’t take the heat, leave your job, but you will never find another which pays for a 40hr week with twenty hours of student contact, free Christmas, Easter, and summer holidays, and half days in summer.

      • Gahan says:

        While Erin Tanti was teaching without a warrant and dating a 15 year old student !

      • La Redoute says:

        @Pat Zahra

        There are great gaping holes in the system through which the dubious, the unreliable and the downright dangerous can creep in.

        Erin Tanti was approved as supply teacher. He didn’t hold a warrant because he didn’t apply for one. Had he applied for one, it would have been issued.

        Mark Vella Gera was let go by two different schools for similar offences.

        Vince Taliana is still teaching, after being asked to leave a series of teaching jobs.

        70 teachers have been found to have been employed without a teaching warrant.

        Several teachers link up with their pupils on social networks and erode professional boundaries in other ways too.

        Some teachers’ off-duty behaviour is less than exemplary.

        Need I go on?

        Kudos to you for taking your job seriously. Don’t take criticism personally. But don’t defend the indefensible, either. All the controls you mention didn’t save Lisa Maria Zahra from Erin Tanti. Isn’t it time that prospective teachers’ personalities are tested, along with their academic ability?

  5. M. says:

    It is not only access to the children’s data, but also that of their parents.

  6. Joe Fenech says:

    “Ic-Cinizi jaqblu maghna. Allura wotz da proplem?”

  7. Imhaseb says:

    Another form of Banding for our children but this time it’s political.

  8. Cikku says:

    Kuljum b’xi ħaġa ġdida! U sa meta se jkun hemm aċċess għal din id-“data” – sakemm l-istudenti jispiċċaw l-iskola/kulleġġ/università?

    Nemmen li la darba wieħed ikollu din l-informazzjoni maħżuna xi mkien ma nafx kemm se jħassarha imma jibqa’ jżommha u jagħmel l-użu li jkollu bżonn anke jekk ikun abbuż.

    Bye Bye privatezza.

    Mill-informazzjoni fuq l-istudenti tista’ tasal ukoll għall-ġenituri eċċ mhux hekk? BIG BROTHER is watching. Addio “data protection act”. Ilu jberraq – sinjali ta’ komuniżmu.

  9. Tom Dounle Thumb says:

    Excuse my ignorance. I was a teacher for 50 years (in fact I am still doing voluntary work as a teacher in one of the poorer EU countries).

    I was always under the impression that teachers and schools were bound by PROFESSIONAL SECRECY just like doctors and priests.

    Is the state, or specifically the Minister of Education, going to replace Father Confessor?

    Are parents obliged to give personal and private information over and above that found in all public documents (name, date of birth, father’s name, address, etc)?

    What happens to a parent who does not include any more than the basic information needed?

    Will they be considered even greater criminals than those who bribed public officials at Enemalta?

    Will their names be splashed all over the Government Gazette and other media?

    Will the private information passing into the hands of the Minister be used for any political purposes?

    And most importantly, CAN WE TRUST THE MINISTER?

  10. Nighthawk says:

    This is no surprise. Many of the minister’s ex-students at De La Salle in their late forties will tell you that the minister spent a good bit of time in class extolling the virtues of communism and trying to persuade them of this. His opinion obviously has not changed. He should never have been allowed anywhere near a classroom, let alone made minister of education.

  11. Gahan says:

    Dan Antonio Ghio żgur xi Nazzjonalist!

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