Online Safety Monthly Newsletters for Parents/Carers
Online Safety Information for Parents
Most of our pupils use the Internet at home and we know that, as parents, it can be difficult to allow children the freedom to develop as responsible individuals while protecting them from the perils and pitfalls of the Internet. Increasingly, even at primary school age, younger people are conducting their social life online so parents need to provide guidance to make sure that their children behave safely and responsibly. Please help your children by following these key recommendations:
- Talk regularly with your children about their use of technology and how they communicate with people online
- Keep computers and other web-enabled devices in family rooms
Technology is a fantastic aid to learning and enjoyment but there are dangers of which we must all be aware. At school we have strict filters on internet traffic at Service Provider level, we do not allow pupils to communicate online with people outside of the school and we do not allow children to use the internet unsupervised.
A wealth of information exists about online safety and children’s use of the Internet so it can be difficult to get clear, concise guidelines about the right way to approach online safety. We’ve waded through the online safety guidelines and websites, drawn from our own experience of issues raised in school and put together some practical tips to ensure safer and more healthy use of technology at home.
More information for parents and carers regarding safe use of the internet can be found on the following website: Saferinternet.org.uk
What to tell your children
At school, we educate children about online safety in ICT lessons but it’s important that parents know some key online safety tips too. Please remind your children of the following:
Don’t post too much information about yourself online
Only message or chat to people that you know in real life
Think very carefully before posting photos
Always be friendly
If something online makes you feel uncomfortable, get your parents
Talk to your parents and respect your family’s rules for internet use
Mobile Devices (iPods, iPads, etc)
Most of our pupils have their own iPods, iPads, Android Tablets or other devices. This means they also have access to the internet including social networks, text and video chat.
Consider setting Parental Restrictions
It can be more difficult for parents to monitor use of internet enabled devices such as iPods and tablet computers that can be easily carried from one room to another.
Consider taking devices away at bedtime
When it’s time to sleep, an internet connected device on a bedside table can be distracting. It is very common for children to play games and message friends when they should be getting a refreshing night’s sleep.
Social Networking (Facebook, Twitter etc)
If you can, stick to age appropriate websites. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter require users to be older than 13 to have a profile, but younger children set up accounts anyway. Social networks keep children connected to friends and provide a space for self-expression but there are no guarantees of privacy: anything can be shared.
Parents must take responsibility for underage use of social networks
Privacy settings should, if possible, be restricted to Friends only
Children should not post too much information about themselves
All messages should be friendly and not critical of others. It can be easy to misinterpret the tone and meaning of on-screen communications and children, in particular, should always check messages before hitting the send button.
Issues arising from upsetting communications can sometimes spill over into school. Where this occurs we will work with parents and pupils to resolve the issues and reinforce the importance of appropriate behaviour.
Online resources to support parents and carers