Privacy Notice

Privacy Notice

 

Introduction

Thank you for visiting the Office of the Education Ombuds website and reviewing our Privacy Notice. This notice addresses collection, use and security of and access to information that may be obtained through use of our website.

Data Collection and Use

Information collected if you only browse this site

If you do nothing during your visit but browse through the website, read pages, or download information, we will gather and store certain information about your visit. This information does not identify you personally. We automatically collect and store the following information about your visit:

  1. The Internet domain and network (IP) address you use to access this site.
  2.  The type of web browser and operating system you are using; 
  3. The date and time;
  4. The pages you visit on this website; 
  5. The last website you visited before coming to ours; and 
  6.  Other web traffic statistics such as Google Analytics or Piwik Analytics.

The information we automatically collect is saved and used by this agency only to improve the content of our web services and to help us understand how people are using our services. 

Information collected if you volunteer information

If during your visit to our website, you participate in a survey, send us an email, or perform some other transaction online, the following additional information may be collected:

  1. Your email address and contents of the email.
  2. Information volunteered in response to a survey.
  3. Information volunteered through an online form for any other purpose.

The information collected is not limited to text characters and may include audio, video, and graphic information formats you send us. We will not usually ask for or collect this kind of information from the general public through this website unless you request our services using our online intake form or access our online feedback survey.

Email you send to us may be used to respond to issues appropriately and to further improve our services.  Email that you send us specifically related to the usability of this website may be forwarded to our technical support contacts within state government.   

Records, including emails, surveys or other information received by OEO from the public are subject to state records retention laws and schedules. For details regarding the types of records OEO maintains and confidentiality protections for records maintained by OEO, see OEO’s Access to Public Records Policy. For general information regarding state records retention requirements applicable to state agencies, visit Washington State Archives.  

Personal Information

Personally identifiable information (“PII”) as defined in this Privacy Notice, means information about a natural person that is readily identifiable to that specific individual. Personal information includes such things as an individual’s name, address, and phone number, and does not include the user’s domain name or IP address.

We collect no PII about you unless you voluntarily provide it to us by sending us email, or completing an online form or survey.  You may choose not to contact us by e-mail or to provide any PII using an online form or survey.   Your choice to not participate in these activities will not restrict or impair your ability to use our site and read or download any information provided on the site. If you choose to provide PII by emailing us, participating in a survey, or completing an online form, we may store this information.

OEO uses Quickbase, a database service, to track our work. If you fill out our online request form, the data you provide will be stored in this database service. The Quickbase company’s privacy statement is similar to ours, and you can read it on their website (link is external).
 
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (link is external) (COPPA) governs the online collection of information from or about children under the age of 13. We are especially concerned about protecting children's privacy. Under COPPA, a website must get parental permission before collecting personally identifiable information about a child under the age of 13. 

If you have questions about how we use your personally identifiable information, you can contact our agency as shown in the Contact Information section of this statement.

Public Access to Information

In the State of Washington, laws exist to ensure that government is open and that the public has a right to access appropriate records and information possessed by state government. At the same time, there are exceptions to the public's right to access public records that serve various needs including the privacy of individuals. Exceptions are provided by both state and federal laws.

As a public agency, all our information is governed by laws such as Washington’s Public Records Act, RCW 42.56 (link is external). Information you send us may become a public record, and it may be subject to public inspection and copying, if not otherwise protected by federal or state law. 

For example, the Washington State Public Records Act states that:

Each agency, in accordance with published rules, shall make available for public inspection and copying all public records, unless the record falls within the specific exemptions of subsection (6) of this section [RCW 42.56.070(6) (link is external)], Chapter 42.56 RCW (link is external), or other statute which exempts or prohibits disclosure of specific information or records. To the extent required to prevent an unreasonable invasion of personal privacy interests protected by Chapter 42.56 RCW (link is external), an agency shall delete identifying details in a manner consistent with Chapter 42.56 RCW (link is external) when it makes available or publishes any public record; however, in each case, the justification for the deletion shall be explained fully in writing.

For more information about exemptions to disclosure that may apply to records maintained by OEO, review OEO’s Access to Public Records Policy. In the event of a conflict between this Privacy Notice and the Public Records Act or other law governing the agency’s disclosure of records, the Public Records Act or other applicable law will control. 

Correcting Personally Identifiable Information

State law requires agencies that collect personally identifiable information to provide “procedures for correcting inaccurate information, including establishing mechanisms for individuals to review information about them and recommend changes in information they believe to be inaccurate.” RCW 43.105.365 (link is external).

You can access any personally identifiable information we collect about you by using the information in the Contact Information section at the end of this Notice. We will do our best to correct factual errors in your personally identifiable information if you send us a written request that clearly shows the error. We will take reasonable steps to verify your identity before granting access or making corrections.

User Tracking and Customization of Pages

To better serve our users, we use a variety of indicators to customize your browsing experience with this website, including “cookies.” If you use your browser settings opt to block all cookies in the settings to your web browser (such as Internet Explorer, Safari, Chrome or Firefox), (including essential cookies) this could affect the availability and functionality of this website.  We only have control over indicators we provide and not over third party tools or other technologies deployed on this website that may be created by using embedded third party applications. 

Security

This Agency has taken steps to safeguard the integrity of its data and prevent unauthorized access to information maintained by us. These measures are designed and intended to prevent corruption of data, block unknown or unauthorized access to our systems and information, and to provide reasonable protection of information in our possession.

Copyright

This site contains text, artwork, photos or other content that is copyrighted by others and is being used with permission of the copyright holder. Therefore, we recommend that you contact our Webmaster (link sends e-mail) for permission to use any content contained on this site.

Disclaimer

Neither the State of Washington, nor any agency, officer, or employee of the State of Washington warrants the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of any information published by this system, nor endorses any content, viewpoints, products, or services linked from this system, and shall not be held liable for any losses caused by reliance on the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of such information. Portions of such information may be incorrect or not current. Any person or entity who relies on any information obtained from this system does so at their own risk.

Our website contains links to other websites. These include links to websites operated by other government agencies, nonprofit organizations and private businesses, including but not limited to the websites of our vendors. When you follow a link to another site, you are no longer on our website and this Privacy Notice will not apply– you will be subject to the privacy notice of that new site.

Reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the State of Washington, this agency, or its officers, employees or agents.

We reserve the right to revise and update this Privacy Notice at any time without notice by posting the revision on our site.

Glossary

A network address is assigned to your computer or mobile device whenever you are using the Internet. Network addresses can be IP address like this: 192.168.0.11 or like this: fc00:0:0:0:0:0:0:0:/7 or Ethernet addresses like this 00:00:00:FF:EE:11

Cookies are small data files stored on your hard drive or in your device memory when you visit a website. Cookies and similar technologies are widely used by websites to make them work more efficiently, as well as to provide information to the website operator about how users are using their website. Most browsers allow you to block cookies by adjusting the “settings,” “preferences” or “internet options.” To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, please refer to your browser ‘help’ section, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s explanation on its website (link is external), or Washington State privacy resources at Privacy.wa.gov. 

Contact Information

You may contact us using our Contact page