Freedom of information

The Freedom of Information Act gives you the right to request information from public bodies like the GTCNI.

This means that members of the public have the right of access to information to help you understand:

  • how GTCNI works
  • how we spend public money
  • how and why we make our decisions.

For more information about how we manage your own personal information and our Privacy Notice, including the right of individuals to make a Data Subject Access Request please visit our pages on GTCNI’s Privacy Notice.

How do I make an Freedom of Information request

You must request information about the GTCNI in writing (including email). Please ensure that you:

  • print your name and address for correspondence
  • state clearly the information you require
  • include a daytime telephone number, should we need to contact you

You can submit a request by writing to or emailing the GTCNI Data Protection Officer:

Mr Gerard Devlin
Data Protection Officer
General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland Albany House
73–75 Great Victoria Street
Belfast, BT2 7AF

Telephone: 028 9033 3390

Once a written request for information is received, GTCNI has 20 working days to respond – although that time can be extended where:

  • an exemption may apply and we need to consider the public interest
  • we are awaiting payment of a fee by you

Sometimes we might need to contact you to clarify exactly what information you are interested in. It will help us to process your request more quickly if you are as specific as possible about what information it is you want.

Is there a cost for getting information?

Normally there will no fee charged for making a request for information under the FoI legislation. However, this depends on a number of factors including the volume of material requested (including the cost of finding, sorting or editing the material).

GTCNI has the right to refuse to respond to a request that is estimated involve significant costs.

  • We are not required to gather information or create information that is not already there. By way of assistance we may contact you and tell you what information we do hold that could help to answer your query, or suggest another public authority that may hold some or all of the information you are looking for.
  • The FOI Act allows you access to almost all information that a public authority holds. But there are some things that cannot be given to the public because they maybe exempt. For example, information about national security, law enforcement or personal information about others – though you can obtain your own personal information.

If you are not satisfied with our response you should contact us and tell us why. If you are still not satisfied with our decision you can request an Internal Review.

If you are not satisfied after an internal review you can contact the Information Commissioner, for more information visit of Privacy Notice.

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