Being a DPO: a guide for trust governance leads

Understand what your responsibilities are as a data protection officer (DPO), how to balance them with your role as a governance lead and what your trust should do to support you.

Last reviewed on 9 April 2024
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  1. Requirements for the role
  2. Your responsibilities
  3. Balancing your roles

A note on terminology: this article is aimed at whoever manages governance in a multi-academy trust (MAT). This individual may be called a ‘governance co-ordinator’, ‘governance manager’, ‘head of governance’ or something different.

Requirements for the role

In some MATs, the governance lead takes on the role of data protection officer (DPO).

Existing employees are able to take on this responsibility on a part-time basis, provided they have:

  • Professional duties that are compatible with the demands of the DPO role
  • No conflicts of interest with the rest of their job
  • Appropriate training 

Your trust should also make sure you have enough time to carry out the role by working out:

The section at the end of this article will help you to balance your governance lead and