Administrative Procedure 370: Ontario Student Record (OSR)

Legal References

Education Act: Section 265 (1) (d) Duties of Principal - Pupil Records; Education Act: Section 266 Pupil Records; O. Reg. 374/10 Supervised Alternative Learning; R.R.O. Reg. 293 Fees for Transcripts and Statements of Standing; Ontario Student Record (OSR) Guideline; Ministry of Education Policy/Program Memorandum 161 Supporting Children and Students with Prevalent Medical Conditions; Ontario Student Transcript (OST) Manual; Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act; Family Law Reform Act; Young Offenders Act; Child and Family Services Act; Criminal Code of Canada

Related References

Administrative Procedure (AP) 205 Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition; AP 302 Student Enrolment; AP 306 Early Learning/Kindergarten Registration; AP 308 Absence of Students; AP 314 Supporting Students with Prevalent Medical Conditions in Schools; AP 357 Violence Free Schools; Form 370A Incoming OSR Checklist; Form 370B Outgoing OSR Checklist; Form 370C Ontario Student Record (OSR) Sign Out Card; Form 370D Request for Ontario Student Record form; Form 370E Courier OSR Sent and Received Confirmation; Form 370F Confirmation of OSR Receipt form; Form 370G Ontario Student Record: Request to Access the OSR

1.0 System Expectations

Ontario Student Records are to be maintained for all students in accordance with the Education Act, the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and all applicable regulations and guidelines of the Government of Ontario and Avon Maitland District School Board.

2.0 Administrative Procedures

2.1 This administrative procedure complies with the Ontario Student Record (OSR) Guideline and outlines the requirements for establishing, using, maintaining, and accessing the OSR. The OSR Guideline sets out the policies of the Ministry of Education with regard to the establishment, maintenance, use, retention, transfer and disposal of the OSR.

2.2 This procedure provides additional direction to principals in the Avon Maitland District School Board.

2.3 All appendices and forms required for the OSR cannot be changed from the originals provided by the Ministry of Education.

3.0 Establishment of the OSR

3.1 “It is the duty of a principal… to collect information for inclusion in a record in respect of each pupil enrolled in the school and to establish, maintain, retain, transfer and dispose of the record.” Education Act, Section 265 (1) (d) and S. 266

3.2 It is the duty of the school principal to ensure that the materials in the OSR comply with this procedure and the Ontario Student Record Guideline 2000.

4.0 Responsibility for the OSR

4.1 The principal will designate which secretary(secretaries) and teachers will be responsible for particular tasks. The principal shall ensure that all persons delegated to perform the functions of the OSR are fully aware of the confidentiality provisions of the Education Act and the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

4.1.1 Secretaries will also have access to the Ministry of Education Ontario Education Number (OEN) website for the purpose of assigning student OENs. Each designated secretary and principal will complete the “Secure Access Registration Form” from the Ministry of Education Applications in Publicly Funded Schools. The OEN will be affixed to the hard copy OSR and entered into the Student Information System (Maplewood). Secretaries are responsible for maintaining all of the above three OEN locations.

4.1.2 Information Services support staff will be responsible for the technical maintenance and support of the computerized OSR information.

4.2 The Director of Education, or designate, will designate the personnel at the administration office responsible for the transfer of records from a school to an archives locale, and for the ongoing maintenance of these archival records. Those persons will be made fully aware of the confidentiality of these records, and of the terms of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

4.3 Principals shall ensure that each student, and the parents/guardians of a student who is under the age of eighteen, are made aware, annually, of the purpose and content of, and access to, all of the information contained in the OSR. The aforementioned information must be printed in the program and course calendar and/or student handbook. At the time of enrolment, this information must be shared via the OSR Fact Sheet (Appendix A).

4.4 The OSR folder is available through the AMDSB Media Centre, the Ontario Student Transcript paper is available by contacting an external agency, the documentation file folder is available through the Executive Assistant for the Superintendent responsible for Special Education, and the office index card is printed for deleted students from the Student Information System (Maplewood).

4.5 Principals must ensure the information in the OSR is updated as required. This includes the electronic student record.

5.0 Components of the OSR

An OSR will consist of the following components:
  • The verification box on Part A of the OSR folder must be checked and initialled by school staff confirming the verification of the student’s date of birth and legal name. The Ontario Education Number (OEN) must be recorded;
  • Report cards in chronological order;
  • Additional progress reports (summer school/continuing education results, credit recovery, external credits, PLAR and independent learning centre reports);
  • An Ontario Student Transcript will be maintained electronically within the Student Information System (Maplewood) until the student graduates, retires or transfers, at which time an official printed transcript is placed within the paper OSR;
  • Student registration form;
  • A documentation file, where applicable;
  • A learning services file, where applicable;
  • Additional information identified as being conducive to the improvement of the instruction of the student, for example: meeting minutes, correspondence etc.;
  • Annual student photograph as available shall be included in the Student Information System (Maplewood);
  • Participation in co-curricular activities (Part G);
  • Noteworthy accomplishments/achievements;
  • Part B must be completed to facilitate filing and archiving of the OSR; however, this process does not have to occur on an annual basis;
  • Anecdotal and other informal reports of student progress related to the improvement of instruction may be issued and filed at the discretion of the principal;
  • Part C must be completed upon the student’s retirement; and
  • Part H must indicate the date on which the student enters a Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL) program (O. Reg. 374/10 Supervised Alternative Learning).

6.0 Documentation File

Information contained in the OSR must be conducive to the improvement of the instruction/program of the student. When a documentation file is required, it will be kept in the OSR folder. A documentation file is created when the following information is required:
  • Custody order documentation;
  • Individual Medical Management Plan of Care;
  • Transportation Individual Medical Management Plan;
  • Verification of change of surname;
  • A written request to be named by repute;
  • Confirmation of Pupil Eligibility for English as a Second Language Funding form (if applicable);
  • The report of a Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL) committee (refer to Supervised Alternate Learning Administrative Procedure 255, for details);
  • Letters of request for a correction to, or a deletion from, the record where the request has not been granted (see section 9, OSR Guideline);
  • A Violent Incident Report Form (refer to Violence-Free Schools Administrative Procedure 357 for details on the keeping of records on violent incidents);
  • Release forms including those permitting access by non-teaching board professional staff;
  • Referral forms;
  • Consent for Release of Information;
  • Letters of suspension;
  • Approved third party reports which, in the opinion of the principal, are conducive to the improvement of the instruction of the student; (e.g. medical, legal reports);
  • Approved standardized test results (e.g. EQAO);
  • Credit substitution requests and approvals;
  • Consent forms for testing and placement, counselling and dispensing of medication; and
  • Community Involvement Hours.

7.0 Learning Services File

The Learning Services File may contain the following:
  • The statement of decision of an Identification, Placement, and Review Committee (IPRC); the recommendation of an appeal board and the decision of the school board regarding identification and/or placement, where applicable; and a tribunal’s decision regarding identification and/or placement, where applicable;
  • An Individual Education Plan (IEP) for a student receiving learning services, programs and supports;
  • Educational, psychological, and health assessments; and
  • A Special Equipment Amount (SEA) status form.

8.0 The Ontario Student Transcript (OST)

8.1 An official print copy of the Ontario Student Transcript (OST) will be filed in the OSR upon transfer, retirement and/or graduation. At all other times, the OST will be maintained as an electronic file in the Student Information System (Maplewood).

8.2 Copies of the OST are provided free of charge to students currently enrolled at a secondary school. Copies requested by students not currently enrolled and out of school for more than one year will be subject to a fee established by the Director of Education.

9.0 The Office Index Card

All schools must maintain an Active Office Index Card file and an Inactive Office Index Card file as per Section 3.5 of the OSR Guideline.

9.1 The Active Office Index Card will be maintained electronically within the Student Information System (Maplewood) for students currently enrolled.
9.2 Upon the student’s transfer, retirement and/or graduation, an Inactive Office Index Card must be printed, labelled and filed by the year of retirement and stored in a secure location. The card is not filed in the OSR, and is not transferred when the student transfers from the school.

10.0 Student Record of Accumulated Instruction in French as a Second Language in Elementary School

10.1 An individual record of accumulated instruction in French as a Second Language will be established and maintained for each student enrolled in an elementary school. The record will be kept on a card that is available from the Media Centre, and will include all of the information required for each entry. An entry will be made on the record:
      • at the end of a school year, semester, or summer course; and
      • when a student transfers to another school, including a private, federal, or First Nation school; and
      • when a student retires from school.

10.2 If a student has had previous instruction in French but no record is available, the entries on the card must be started at least from the date of enrolment in an Ontario school. A note will be made on the first lines of the instruction card indicating what is known about a student's previous instruction in French as a second language and in other subjects taught in French. If the number of accumulated hours must be estimated, an annotation must indicate that the figure is approximate.

11.0 Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) Challenge for Credit: Cumulative Tracking Record

If a secondary school student challenges for credit for a Grade 10, 11, or 12 course through the Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) challenge process, a record of all credits earned and attempted will be established and will be maintained in the student's OSR. This record will be kept on the form entitled "PLAR Challenge for Credit: Cumulative Tracking Record" (see AP 205). The student's passing percentage grade, failing percentage grade, or withdrawal from the challenge process must be entered on this form.

12.0 Review and Monitoring

12.1 The principal shall require that the OSR for each pupil be reviewed and updated not less than twice annually.
12.1.1 Items that are no longer conducive to the education of the student must be removed and shredded.
12.1.2 Suspension letters may be shredded following a retention of the current year plus one year. The determination of the removal and destruction of suspension letters should be based upon the conduciveness of the record to the educational needs of the student. Violent incident reports must be maintained as per AP 357 Violence-Free Schools.
12.1.3 As a result of this review, information about students with special needs, and/or concerns about information included in the OSR are to be communicated to the principal following each review.

12.2 The update and review will be undertaken:
12.2.1 In elementary schools, by the homeroom teacher(s) in September and in June annually;
12.2.2 In secondary schools, by teaching staff designated by the principal in September and June for a semestered program or de-semestered program.

12.3 The principal or designate shall review the OSR for all new students who are external admissions or are transferring to the school. The principal shall review the OSR for all students who retire or transfer from the school, and shall remove all materials no longer considered to be conducive to instruction. Form 370A Incoming OSR Checklist and Form 370B Outgoing OSR Checklist contain specific checklists to assist with the receipt and transfer review processes of the OSR.

12.4 The OSR folder for each exceptional pupil shall contain a Learning Services folder which shall be reviewed by the school resource teacher as early as possible during the month of September. Special needs and concerns are to be communicated to the principal and the teacher(s).

12.5 Schools must affix a Prevalent Medical condition sticker (MAR: Medically-at-Risk) to the right hand corner of the OSR folder.

12.6 The student’s Maplewood record must indicate a prevalent medical or other health condition by applying the Prevalent Medical condition red flag.

12.7 If the parent(s) or adult student is (are) of the opinion that the information contained in the student's OSR is inaccurately recorded or that it is not conducive to the improvement of the instruction of the student, the parent(s) or adult student may request in writing that the principal correct the alleged inaccuracy or remove the information from the record. If the principal complies with the request, the material will be corrected or will be removed from the file and destroyed or returned to the parent(s) or the adult student, and no record of the request will be retained in the OSR. If the principal refuses to comply with the request, the parent(s) or the adult student may request in writing that the principal refer the request to the appropriate supervisory officer.

12.8 Every principal will ensure that no OSR discloses (a) the contravention or alleged contravention by a student of any statute or regulation to which the Young Offenders Act or Part V- A of the Provincial Offences Act applies, or (b) the disposition of any proceedings brought under those statutes or regulations. If an entry in an OSR does disclose such information, the principal of the school in which the student is enrolled will ensure that the entry is altered appropriately or deleted from the OSR.

13.0 Change of Surname

13.1 Change by Repute

When a principal receives a written request from an adult student or the parent(s) of a student who is not an adult, that the student be identified by a surname other than the legal surname of the student and when (a) the student is known by a surname other than his or her legal surname, (b) the surname is a name obtained by repute, and (c) the use of the surname is in the student's best interests, the principal will record the requested surname in Part A of the OSR folder in addition to the legal surname of the student, and the requested surname will be used henceforth. In this case, the legal surname will be enclosed in brackets. The written request will be stored in the documentation file.


13.2 Change by Marriage

When a principal receives a document that establishes that a student has had his/her surname changed by marriage, the principal will file the document, in the documentation file, and will change the surname of the student on all current and future components of the OSR.


13.3 Change by Law

When a principal receives a document that establishes that a student has had his/her surname changed in accordance with the law, the principal will file the document in the documentation file, and, on request, will change the surname of the student on all components of the OSR so that the record will appear as if originally established in the new surname.

14.0 Storage and Security

14.1 The OSR files shall be stored centrally in a lockable file, or in a room or vault that can be locked. The storage area of the OSRs must be locked at the end of each day.

14.2 The OSR files shall be available to authorized persons only, and their use shall be restricted to areas of the school identified by the principal. OSR files shall not be removed from the school building unless authorized by a supervisory official or a suitable court order.

14.3 OSR files removed from the room in which they are stored must be signed out by an authorized person on an Ontario Student Record (OSR) Sign Out Card (Form 370C).

14.4 OSR files shall be returned to the central storage area by the end of each school day.

14.5 Long-term storage of retired files shall be in an archival storage area at the board’s administration office in accordance with Section 8 of the OSR Guideline.

14.6. The destruction of all or any part of the OSR, when its retention is no longer required under this procedure, will be effected under conditions that ensure the complete and confidential disposal of the record.

15.0 Transfer Requests and Forwarding

15.1 Requests for OSRs are to be in writing from all schools, including schools within the jurisdiction of the Avon Maitland District School Board. AMDSB schools may use an email to request the OSR. These requests must be maintained for audit purposes in print form. External requests for OSRs must be made using the Request for Ontario Student Record form (Form 370D). All OSR requests must be retained in the school office, outside of the OSR for the current year plus three years.

15.2 Forwarding of OSR files within the district may be by board courier. The AMDSB Courier OSR Sent and Received Confirmation (Form 370E) must be initialled by the sending school, the courier driver and the receiving school as appropriate. The AMDSB Courier OSR Sent and Received Confirmations will be retained by the courier driver for current plus one year. OSR files going to other schools in Ontario are to be sent by Priority Post or an equivalent delivery method that maintains confidentiality and guarantees prompt, trackable delivery. A Confirmation of OSR Receipt form (Form 370F) should be sent with the OSR and faxed back to the sending school when the OSR reaches its destination.

15.3 For transfer requests to private schools or First Nation Schools in Ontario, the principal must have received:
    1. a written request for the information from the receiving school, in which the school agrees to accept responsibility for the OSR and to maintain, retain, transfer, and dispose of the OSR in accordance with this Administrative Procedure; and
    2. a written statement indicating consent to the transfer, which is signed by the parent(s) of the student if he or she is not an adult, or by the student if he or she is an adult.
15.4 An original OSR may not be transferred outside of Ontario. Only an exact copy of the OSR may be sent to the principal of an educational institution outside of Ontario after the Principal who is responsible for the OSR has received:
    1. a written request from the principal of the educational institution outside Ontario; and
    2. a written statement indicating consent to the transfer, which is signed by the parent(s) of the student if he or she is not an adult, or by the student if he or she is an adult. The principal shall send, by registered mail, only a true copy of the information in and on the OSR.

16.0 Retention

16.1 The Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act requires that personal information that has been used by an institution shall be retained by the institution for at least one year after use, unless the individual to whom the information relates consents in writing to its earlier disposal. Therefore, any personal information placed in an OSR shall be retained by the school for at least one year after use, unless the principal receives written consent to its earlier disposal from the adult student or the parent(s) or guardian(s) of the student.

16.2 The OSR shall be retained until July 31st of the fifth year following the year in which the student retired from school.

16.3 The following documents shall be retained for fifty-five years after a student retires from school:
    1. The OSR folder;
    2. The Ontario Student Transcript; and
    3. The Office Index Card.
16.4 The destruction of all or any part of the OSR, when its retention is no longer required under the conditions of the OSR Guideline, shall be effected under conditions and means that ensure the complete and confidential disposal of the record.

17.0 Access to the OSR

17.1 Every student has the right of access to his/her OSR. Parents/guardians and students should be made aware of their right of access to the OSR. Access to OSRs must be arranged through the principal.

17.2 Supervisory officers, the principal and teachers, or staff designated by the principal are the only staff that have access to the OSR for the purpose of improving the instruction of the student.

17.3 Every person who has legal access to the OSR, and wishes to examine it, must complete Ontario Student Record: Request to Access the OSR (Form 370G). Once the school principal has received this written request, he/she will establish specific criteria regarding the time and location of that access. A witness must be present during this examination. Upon written request, one copy of documents in the OSR will be provided. The completed form shall be placed in the Documentation File in the OSR and a copy given to the requester.

17.4 An OSR must be released for immediate viewing within the school building when a court order or search warrant is presented. In these cases, principals must contact the appropriate supervisory officer who shall obtain legal advice about releasing copies of the OSR and any relevant matters.

17.5 If a summons or subpoena is presented, the OSR shall only be released to the court when the principal or other board official attends the court. The principal should go to court with both the original OSR and a complete and exact photocopy and should propose to the judge that the photocopy be submitted instead of the original. The principal should also inform the judge that the subpoena is inconsistent with subsection 266 (2) of the Education Act. The principal must however, relinquish the documents if ordered to do so by the judge.

17.6 There are restrictions placed on the use of the Ontario Student Record (OSR) in court proceedings. Principals must contact the appropriate supervisory officer if requested to produce the OSR for court proceedings.

17.7 Outside agencies wishing access to information contained in an OSR, must provide a signed Release of Information form completed by the parent/guardian or students over age 18.

18.0 Confidentiality of Information

18.1 The confidentiality of information about the individual student is maintained by adherence to Section 266 of the Education Act, the Ontario Student Record (OSR) Guideline, and A Guide to Ontario Legislation Covering the Release of Students’ Personal Information (1998).

18.2 Provisions for the protection of confidentiality and the release of information regarding individual students is also governed by the Child & Family Services Act, the Young Offenders Act, the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, and the Family Law Reform Act. It is imperative that the requirements of each piece of legislation be respected. Staff members should note that certain acts, regulations, and requirements of the Criminal Code supersede the authority of the Education Act. In such cases, staff members shall consult with the supervisory officer prior to releasing or refusing to release information.

18.3 Schools regularly receive requests from lawyers to release contents of student records. A letter from a lawyer must be accompanied by a request and release form signed by the parent/ guardian or adult student.

19.0 Continuing Education Records

19.1 All schools must maintain an Active Office Index Card file and an Inactive Office Index Card file as per Section 3.5 of the OSR Guideline.

19.1.1 The Active Office Index Card will be maintained electronically within the Student Information System (Maplewood) for students currently enrolled.
19.1.2 Upon the student’s transfer, retirement and/or graduation, an Inactive Office Index Card must be printed and filed by the year of retirement. The card is not filed in the OSR, and is not transferred when the student transfers from the school.

19.2 The OST will be maintained by the principal of the continuing education program. If, however, the student is also enrolled in a day school program, the principal of the continuing education program will forward information on credits earned to the principal of the day school program for inclusion in the student's OST.

19.3 OSRs will not be maintained at Continuing Education sites.


Appendix A - The Ontario Student Record (OSR)

What is the Ontario Student Record (OSR)?
The OSR is the ongoing, confidential record of a student’s educational progress. The collection of this information is authorized by the Education Act. The Freedom of Information Act and Protection of Privacy Act protect its contents. An OSR is established for each student who enrolls in an elementary or secondary school that is operated by a public or separate school board in Ontario.

Where is the OSR kept?
A student OSR is securely housed at the student’s school. If a student transfers to another school in Ontario, the OSR folder and all its contents are transferred to the new school.
 
What does the OSR contain?
An OSR consists of the OSR folder, various supporting documents and other information. On the OSR folder itself, the following information is entered: biographical data, school attended, name(s) of student’s parent(s) or guardian(s), information on any special health conditions and other information that is considered relevant for improving the instruction of the student.

Photographs may also be attached.
The following material is filed in the OSR folder:
  • Report cards
  • The Ontario Student Transcript, which is the cumulative record of a student’s successful completion of secondary school courses
  • A Documentation file, if required, which might include such material as verification of a custody or a change-of-name order; assessment reports; placement decisions; suspension letters etc.
  • The record of the student’s accumulated instruction in French as a second language, if applicable
  • Additional information considered relevant for improving the instruction of the student

Who has access to an OSR?
The information in an OSR is available only to supervisory officers, the principal and the teachers of the school for the purpose of improving the instruction of the student. Written permission is requested for any outside agency/personnel to access the OSR. All students, and the parents/guardians of students under 18 years of age, have the right to examine the OSR and to receive a copy of its contents, if they so desire. Contact the Principal for details of the procedure to be followed.
 
What if there is an error or change required?
If the parent/guardian or adult student feels the information contained in the student’s OSR is inaccurately recorded or inappropriate, the parent/guardian or adult student may request in writing that the principal correct the alleged inaccuracy or remove the information from the record. If the principal complies with the request, the information will be corrected or removed from the file. If the principal does not comply, the matter may be referred to the appropriate supervisory officer with a request in writing from the adult student or student’s parent/guardian.

Want to know more?
More information can be obtained from the Ontario Ministry of Education web site: www.edu.gov.on.ca

Revised February 2016