The internet is amazing! But we know that in this modern world it's essential that we all teach our children how to keep themselves safe when they are online. We've collected lots of useful information and links below. We're committed to promoting the safe and responsible use of the internet. We have extensive security measures in place in school, which are monitored both internally and externally, to help safeguard pupils from potential dangers or unsuitable material. It is likely, though, that most children will come across something that they don't like, something that worries them, or something that is inappropriate or unsuitable, at some point whilst using online apps, and it is important they know what to do in this situation. We teach children about online safety through our curriculum, through assemblies, through workshops, through staff training and through working with outside agencies such as the NSPCC and CEOP.
Instagram is a social media application that allows people to upload videos and images and allows others to comment on them. By default all photos can be viewed by anyone on the application unless you have set your account to private. In addition to this, each photo can be easily geotagged which means that people who can view your photos or videos can easily locate where they were taken.
Instagram accounts are supposed to be for young people aged 13 and over. Anyone with this application should ensure that their accounts are set to private and that the geotag facility is turned off. We remind children that they should not accept any friend requests, using any application, from people they do not know in real life, as this could increase the risk of inappropriate contact or behaviour.
Parental controls are software and tools which you can install on phones or tablets, games consoles or laptops – and even your home broadband. You can also use them to help you block or filter the content your child sees when searching online. And family-friendly public WiFi can help when you’re out and about.
Parental controls are also available to help you to:
- plan what time of day your child can go online and how long for
- stop them from downloading apps they're too young for
- manage the content different members of the family can see.
So whatever your child is doing online, there’s a way that you can help keep them safe.
Snapchat is social media application that allows people to send a video or message for up to fifteen seconds. Snapchat claims these messages are then erased forever. However, Snapchats can be screen shot when played. There are also applications available which allow people to hack Snapchat accounts without the sender knowing. There have been serious concerns about Snapchat being exploited by bullies and for other inappropriate contact. This application is only available for young people who are 13 and over, and all information posted on this application is retrievable.
Childnet is a non-profit organisation working with others to help make the internet a great and safe place for children. It offers excellent advice for parents and carers on how to help children use the internet safely and effectively. Click here to visit the Childnet site.
You Tube moderation for parents/carers
Facebook was started in 2004 in the United States as a way for some college kids to stay in touch when they had left campus and it’s evolved since then to become one of the largest social networks in the world. Facebook allows you to create a profile on yourself, communicate with friends on Facebook, share your thoughts and pictures, plan events or join groups. Facebook accounts should only be created for users aged 13 or over. Making a Facebook account private is essential to ensure safety; however Facebook constantly changes its privacy settings and filters, so it is important to keep up to date.
Sexting is when someone shares sexual, naked or semi-naked images or videos of themselves or others, or sends sexually explicit messages or texts. These can be sent using mobiles, tablets, smartphones, laptops - any device that allows you to share media and messages. Creating or sharing explicit images of a child is illegal, even if the person doing it is a child. A child or young person (or an adult) is breaking the law if they take an explicit photo or video of themselves or a friend, if they share an explicit image or video of a child, even if it’s shared between children of the same age, or if they possess, download or store an explicit image or video of a child, even if the child gave their permission for it to be created.