9. Making a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office

If you have attempted to resolve the issue with the data controller but you have not received a satisfactory response, you can make a complaint to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).

The ICO is a regulator who can consider complaints and take action against companies and public organisations. They deal with complaints in relation to both SAR and FOI. 

ICO complaints can take a long time to process, so they are not necessarily a solution when you need information quickly. However, they act as a deterrent for schools and other organisations and can lead to resolution by spurring a school or other data-controller An organisation that holds information about a person. In relation to school files, the school holding the file is the data-controller to take action before facing enforcement from the ICO.

ICO complaints are free and straightforward to make. You can use the online tools below. It is best to provide all your correspondence with the school as evidence of the request, and your attempts to resolve the dispute.

  • To make a complaint to the ICO about an SAR you can use the online tool.
  • To make a complaint to the ICO about an FOI you can use the online tool.

If you download the form, return it by email to: casework@ico.org.uk 


Or by post to:


Customer Contact Information Commissioner's Office 
Wycliffe House 
Water Lane 
Wilmslow 
SK9 5AF


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