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Digital attendance for group


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Just thinking about the not-for-profit youth theatre group I help run.

We run some short and one day courses amoungst other things for u18s during school holidays.

Currently we have a signing in and out sheet at the door. Wondering about doing it digitally. Only needs to be very simple.

Really *just* an attendance register where kids (or parents) essentially tick a box when they arrive and another when they leave.


Anyone know of anything free (or very very cheap) that could run on a standalone low-spec PC/Laptop? Hopefully a touch screen :)


There's lots of commercial and over complex solutions out there!

Edited by sleah
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Be careful with GDPR and retention of data regarding the whereabouts of under 18s. One venue I know of is removing names of under 18s from sign in/out sheets, using some unique ID system to obfuscate the under 18s' name, as the sign in/out sheet is visible to others passing in/out of the venue.


Not to say that a digital system is an inherent issue, pretty much every school uses digital registers, but that there is more opportunity for data to leak than a sheet of paper held til it is shredded.

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There are plenty of commercially available GDPR compliant visitor books on the market. Designed to keep visitor names secure, but still provide a full list in case of fire or whatever.


Probably simpler than a tech solution.



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surely this is taking GDPR too far. if you have kids licences, you already have all their details that need safekeeping under the GDPR regs. The signing in sheet is added security for them, and with only a name and no photo, or visible address is NOT by my reading of the rules, anything to concern me. this seems like somebody getting GDPR paranoia. It is meant to be protection, and if you can be secure enough with your duties under child protection and licensing, then stage door keepers are not an issue.


Surely the actual Act section is this bit/

The GDPR applies to the processing of personal data that is: wholly or partly by automated means; or

the processing other than by automated means of personal data which forms part of, or is intended to form part of, a filing system.


My highlighting.


A signing in sheet is not something that needs to be stored for future use and filed away. If they are simply shredded once people have gone, then no personal data has been filed or stored. The purpose of signing in sheets is to see who is currently in the building, not who was in the building last Wednesday!


Based on this, those expensive blacked out sheets are praying on the gullible. Don't file them or store them and just shred them when the people have gone.


I am of course not a lawyer, but I'm very dubious of people attempting to use a positive law to make life harder or worse, make money.

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A signing in sheet is not something that needs to be stored for future use and filed away. If they are simply shredded once people have gone, then no personal data has been filed or stored. The purpose of signing in sheets is to see who is currently in the building, not who was in the building last Wednesday!


I'm not sure I'd agree with that, especially if you are collecting a parents signature to say who has collected them. This is something you may want to produce after the fact if something has happened to the child after they left your care to a) prove they have left your care and b) who took care of them at the time. I would of thought that you would want to keep this for a reasonable amount of time and they destroy inline with a well thought out destruction schedule.

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Yes - I see your point, but if you are already dealing with the security involved with dealing with vulnerable young people and adults, then you already have secure storage for their licences, photographs and the other stuff, like which parent is Not allowed to collect them etc etc. For what it's worth, in my pro pantos, we do NOT keep any records of the people who come to collect the kids. It's never been a requirement, and as most belong to the local dance school who run this for them, they are the ones who oversee the kids exiting, not the venue stage door staff. However, their names are on the list, and get ticked off as 'left the building'. Who they went with, I have no idea, and can't see why I'd need to add this to my list of responsibilities. I'd have thought this is a chaperone responsibility? I usually scan the sign in sheet and if the quantity is right, I couldn't worry about which child is in and which one is actually in the show - if there should be 12, and there are 12, smile and move on. If there are 11, I find the chaperone in charge and ask if I should worry, and if they say no - again, move on. I've been dealing with pro shows with kids in for 15 years now and nobody has ever asked me for a list of who was in, and frankly, I would have no clue, even at curtain down.


Clearly GDPR is something people fret about, for fear of getting it wrong, but stage door signing in, for me, is a working document for the day, to be destroyed. I can see how people would want to check the kids go to the right people, but that is surely NOT part of the signing in sheet practically every theatre sticks to the counter? That idea that you write in black on a black background, in Hotblack Desiato style for me is totally ruining the purpose of the sheet - for everyone to see who is in the building quickly and simply.

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to see who is currently in the building, not who was in the building last Wednesday!


It can be useful to monitor the level of attendance of each participant. In the case of the thread starter they would likely want to find out if somebody books places on the courses but does not attend, if there is a capacity limit this could result in others being unable to attend. For some productions there will be an attendance level required for rehearsals.

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Just my 2p-worth


Concerns about GDPR must always be secondary to Health & Safety; if you dig deep enough into the regulations you'll find conflicts when it comes to protecting people's data and actually physically protecting the people themselves.


The signing-in sheet is the perfect example. I help run a kiddies' activity centre which requires us to keep a tally of guests as we have a strict limit on how many children can be in the centre at any one time. We take the child's name and age, and software logs the time they came in, then we sign them out as they leave. It tells us how many guests we have in total, how long they've been in, and we can also add notes to their record if, for example, they have accident, however unlikely.


It is up to the person collecting/storing the information (I.e the Data Controller) to ensure that what they are keeping is actually required and not superfluous. In this instance, the only thing we store is the child's first name, age and if they are staying with us on park or are an external visitor. As the data becomes useless after they've left, and cannot be used to identify them after-the-fact, it's compliant.


The data is also automatically destroyed after a set period, again one of the requirements is that you don't store things for longer than you need.


With regards to a paper sheet, if you put it into a filing cabinet, locked it, kept the key yourself, or had strict control over who gets to open it, and then shredded it after 28 days you'd be compliant.


A lot of solutions out there are expensive and wholly overkill, mostly down to profiteering by people trying to cash in on other's fears.


All the best


Edited by timmeh2
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