Letter to councils referring to Scottish National Standardised Assessments (SNSA): FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

FOI reference: FOI/18/02325  
Date received: 29 August 2018
Date responded: 26 September 2018
Information requested
Graeme Logan sent a letter to councils which, amongst other things, referenced apparent advice regarding the SNSA ( “Solar have advised us that parents don’t have the option to opt out of the assessments, explaining that all children ... will participate.”)

I would like to request that the government release all material held in relation to this letter, including - but not limited to - drafts, communications regarding the letter, responses etc.
I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested. While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because exemptions under sections 38(1)(b) (personal information) and 36(1) (legal advice) of FOISA apply to that information. The reasons why those exemptions apply are explained below.
Reasons for not providing information
Exemptions apply:

Section 38(1)(b) – applicant has asked for personal data of a third party.

An exemption under section 38(1) (b) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested. the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, ie Names and contact details of individual and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

Section 36(1) – legal advice.

An exemption under section 36(1) of FOISA (confidentiality in legal proceedings) applies to some of the information requested because it is legal advice and disclosure would breach legal professional privilege.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is some public interest in release as part of open and transparent government, and to inform public debate. However, this is outweighed by the strong public interest in maintaining the right to confidentiality of communications between legal advisers and clients, to ensure that Ministers and officials are able to receive legal advice in confidence, like any other public or private organisation.
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foi-18-02325 Email chains


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit 
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000 

The Scottish Government 
St Andrew's House 
Regent Road 

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