The World today is increasingly complex and we recognise the impact that electronic media can have on children and younger adults. We aim to balance the message between the positive impact they can have on their lives against the risks that exist.
We work with staff, pupils and parents/carers to create a school community which values the use of new technologies in enhancing learning, encourages responsible use of ICT and minimises risks.
We discuss, monitor and review our e-safety policy regularly bass, linking it with other policies such as Safeguarding, Pupil Behaviour and Anti-Bullying. We support staff in the use of ICT to enhance learning and in the teaching of e-safety across the whole school curriculum.
We teach pupils to be aware of the potential risks associated with the use of ICT and mobile technologies and encourage pupils to feel able to report incidents and abide by the school’s e-safety policy.
We aim to provide opportunities for parents/carers to receive e-safety education and information, to enable them to support their children in developing good e-safety behaviour.
What do we deliver:
- A carefully planned e-safety education programme will be provided through Key Stage 3 ICT lessons, Years 7 and 8 being entirely focused on e-safety.
- E-safety will also be delivered via the PSE programme, themed assemblies, digital signage and via the school curriculum, including ICT lessons throughout the year
- Students will be taught to be critically aware of the materials they access on-line and to check the accuracy of information and acknowledge the source of information used and to respect copyright when using material accessed on the internet
- Students will be helped to understand the need for acceptable use of e-technologies and encouraged to adopt safe and responsible use of ICT, the internet and mobile devices both within and outside school
Our school uses a range of devices including PC’s, laptops and Apple Macs. In order to safeguard the student and in order to prevent loss of personal data we employ the following assistive technology: Internet Filtering – we use Fortiguard software that prevents unauthorised access to illegal websites. It also prevents access to inappropriate websites; appropriate and inappropriate is determined by the age of the user and is reviewed regularly. The Data Services Manager is responsible for ensuring that the filtering is appropriate and that any issues are brought to the attention of the Headteacher.
The world changes. Children don’t – this is a short film that tells the age-old story of Romeo and Juliet… with a modern twist. It shows how the lives of these young lovers might play out online today, including the Lark ‘tweeting’ and Romeo ‘friending’ Juliet.
The Online Safety Hub – This is a general guide of some of the most popular apps that children and young people are currently using.
Childline’s app ‘For Me’ seeks to help young people directly on their smartphones. The app was designed by four young apprentices in the hope of utilising technology to support young people. Click to get the For Me app
These two websites are again free to use and download:
Young people spend increasing amounts of time on social media. While social networking websites can be great for communicating and sharing with friends, it’s important to be aware of how these sites work to make sure that teenagers are using them safely.
Here’s a selection of some of the most widely used social media sites. There are many more and for more information, follow the following links:
What are the most common social media websites?
What’s the difference between each social media site?
Facebook – perhaps the largest and most widely used social networking site. It can be used to share photos, messages, videos, websites and other online content both publicly and privately. You connect with people by adding them or accepting them as Facebook Friends: content cannot be shared with anyone who is not a Friend, but your Friends can share what you post with their own network of Friends. It’s advised that people only accept Friend Requests from people they know in ‘real life’.
Whatsapp – works through a smart phone app (although there is also a website). Essentially, it’s a free messaging service, much like texting, but you can also send photos and videos. You can communicate with individuals or with a number of people in a Group Chat. You can only add someone if you know their mobile phone number.
Snapchat – allows you to send photos and short videos, which are automatically deleted after they have been viewed for a few seconds by the person they have been sent to. You can add captions and filters to the videos and photos. Part of the popularity of Snapchat is that the messages self-destruct. But this has raised issues around privacy and sexting, especially because a recipient may screenshot (take a picture of the message on their own phone) an image, which may then be shared with others.
Twitter – sharing short messages (140 characters), websites, photos and videos. While the platform is mainly used to sharing content publicly with a wide group of people, there is also a private messaging service available on the site. Twitter is popular with young people for following celebrities, brands, friends, and sharing opinions and online content with the Twitter community.
Instagram is primarily an image sharing platform. Users follow their favourite ‘feeds’, people, or companies who post images which are shared with all of their followers. Users can also share their own pictures, which can be viewed by their followers, but may also be viewed by those you have not accepted friend requests from if your privacy settings are not adjusted. Followers can also re-post images with their own followers. Short videos can also be posted.
Snapchat is an instant messaging service with the messages only being visible for a short period of time. Users create ‘streaks’ if they regularly use the service.There is a feature called snap maps for which we have created some guidance about.
Tumblr – browse or blog-write. Most are dominated by visual content, although blogs may include videos, text and audio content. Users follow others’ blogs, but they can also create private blogs which only selected followers may access.
Vine is a bit like Instagram as it enables users to share short videos and images. Unlike Snapchat, the images are permanent and don’t self-destruct. It is increasingly popular for sharing visual content with friends.
Blue Whale Game – The Police have notified us of a new game played onlint, spreading via social media. Players are appointed a “master/teacher” and these “masters/teachers” challenge the players in stages, to tattoo a Blue Whale somewhere on the body, usually the arm or the leg. As the game goes on the players are encouraged to self-harm and the final challenge is to commit suicide. All these actions have to be filmed and shared via social media to the so called “master/teacher”. The game is being played by children of all ages, some as young as primary age, but predominantly by teenagers.
Apparently this game has been mentioned on the Romanian News due to the seriousness of the consequences. This obviously sets a worrying trend. Should you have any concerns or incidents please notify the police on 101 and treat the child or children involved as an urgent safeguarding concern and follow the safeguarding procedures.