Our pupils are growing up in a world of ever-changing technology. While we feel that the use of technology is a largely positive aspect of modern life, however we cannot ignore the risks that can be associated and intend to teach our children to be safe online.
As part of your child's curriculum and the development of computer skills, we provide access to the internet only in teacher supervised lessons. We strongly believe that the use of the web and email is hugely worthwhile and an essential tool for children as they grow up in the modern world. But because there are always concerns about children having access to undesirable materials, we have taken positive steps to deal with this risk in school. Our school internet access provider operates a filtering system that restricts access to inappropriate materials.
As part of each Computing topic, each class discusses how we can all stay safe online and the dangers we may face on the internet with respect to the project they are working on. We also share with all children the Acceptable Use Agreement so that we know they have read and understood our school's rules on staying safe.
Throughout school we aim to teach children:
- Keep passwords and personal information safe
- to tell an adult they trust if something is upsetting them about the impact of cyber-bullying and what to do if they have been affected
- to be vigilant when communicating online recognising that people may not always be who they say they are and to be sensible about what they share
- to question the reliability of information given through a web- based source
- to search responsibly for information while using internet browsers We understand that much of our pupil's use of the internet will occur at home, away from the school filters.
We have a wide range of online safety information available and linked to this page: including a list of useful websites, posters, advice and resources that you may find helpful when navigating the issue of online safety with your child. If you have concerns or would like further advice, please contact a member of the SLT.
As a parent, you'll know how important the internet is to children - they use it to learn, play, socialise and express themselves. It's a highly creative place of amazing opportunities. But the technology children use every day can seem a bit daunting and you might worry about the risks your child can face online - such as bullying, contact from strangers or the possibility of them seeing illegal or inappropriate content.
The best way to learn more is to encourage your children regarding their use of the internet while at home.
Here are some conversation starter ideas from www.childnet.com
- Ask your children to tell you about the sites they like to visit and what they enjoy doing online.
- Ask them about how they stay safe online. What tips do they have for you, and where did they learn them? What is OK and not OK to share?
- Ask them if they know where to go for help, where to find the safety advice, privacy settings and how to report or block on the services they use.
- Encourage them to help. Perhaps they can show you how to do something better online or they might have a friend who would benefit from their help and support.
- Think about how you use the internet as a family. What could you do to get more out of the internet together and further enjoy your lives online?
Some tips for you to help keep your children safe online:
- Consider locating your computer or mobile devices in a family area where children's online activity can be monitored or supervised.
- Talk to your child and ask them to show or even teach you how they use the internet and learn about websites or tools they like to use and why.
- Make sure your child knows it's important that they tell an adult they trust if anything happens online that makes them feel scared, worried or uncomfortable.
- Remind children that they should use the same caution online as they would in the real world. Tell them they should never go to meet someone they have only spoken to online.
- Install antivirus software, secure your internet connection and use Parental Control functions for computers, mobile phones and games consoles to block unsuitable content or contact.
- Familiarise yourself with the age limits of social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, ooVoo, Instagram etc. There's an age limit in place for a reason, if you decide to allow your children on these sites make sure you know how they can protect themselves while using these sites for example knowing how to set appropriate privacy settings.