Privacy notice

Who we are

The Find a lost TRN service is run by the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA), an executive agency of the Department for Education (DfE).

Our service allows anyone with a teacher reference number (TRN) to get a reminder of their TRN by email.

For the purpose of data protection legislation, DfE is the data controller for the data we hold and process.

What data we collect

We collect your:

  • full name
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number
  • initial teacher training (ITT) provider (where you gained qualified teacher status (QTS) or early years teacher status (EYTS))
  • email address

Why we need your data

We need to collect this data so we can find your TRN in our records.

So that our use of your personal data is lawful, we need to meet one (or more) conditions in the data protection legislation. For our service, this is:

  • article 6(1)(e) UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR), to perform a public task carried out in the public interest as part of our function as a department

What we do with your data

We use the data you give us to try and find your TRN in our records. If we can match your data to our records, we’ll email your TRN to you. This allows you to apply for teaching jobs or access other DfE services.

We might also use your details when analysing data to improve the service.

We use GOV.UK PaaS to run the service. Visit the GOV.UK PaaS website to find out how they use and look after your data.

If we cannot find your TRN, you can either:

  • call our helpdesk during working hours
  • submit a service request to our helpdesk

If you do this, we will either:

  • use the CX One telephony management service to handle your call to the helpdesk. CX One is managed by NICE Systems Ltd. Visit the NICE website to find out how they look after your data.
  • use the Zendesk customer management service to manage and respond to your query. Visit the Zendesk website to find out how they look after your data.

How long we keep your data

We’ll keep a record of who has made a request for a TRN reminder, and how many requests have been made, for up to 2 years.

Your data protection rights

You have the right:

  • to ask us what information we hold about you
  • to have your personal data rectified if it is inaccurate or incomplete
  • to request the deletion or removal of personal data where there is no compelling reason for its continued processing
  • to restrict our processing of your personal data (for instance allow us to store it but not process it further)
  • to object to direct marketing (including profiling) and processing for the purposes of scientific or historical research and statistics
  • not to be subject to decisions based purely on automated processing where it produces a legal or similarly significant effect on you

If you have any questions about how we’ll use your personal information, email and enter ‘Data protection enquiry’ as a reference.

You can also contact the Data Protection Office by emailing

You can find further information about your data protection rights on the Information Commissioner’s website.

As we have a clear purpose for processing your personal data, we would not explicitly seek your consent to process your data.

If you’re unhappy with our use of your personal data, please email

You can also contact the DfE Data Protection Office:

Deputy Director, Departmental Data Protection Officer
Wellington Place

Alternatively, you have the right to raise any concerns with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

Changes to this notice

We’ll update this privacy notice when required. You should review it at least once a year.

This version was last updated on 17 May 2022.