North Lane, West Hoathly, West Sussex, RH19 4QG
Tel: 01342 810302 | Email: office@westhoathlyschool.co.uk
Headteacher: Mr Adam J. Earle MA(Ed) NPQH

Keeping Children Safe Online (E-Safety & E-Learning)

Teaching our children about the safe use of the internet is an important part of the work we do in school.  With the increase in accessibility and the growth of online content and activity it is becoming more and more difficult to protect children our children in the online world - the importance of helping our children learn safe and appropriate online behaviour therefore is a vital aim.

What We Do In School

WP_20160422_15_03_58_Pro

FIREWALL & FILTERING: When working in school the children are protected by a firewall to protect the children from outside users and filtering system which prevents access to a range of materials and applications which are inappropriate or offer potential risks.  

SUPERVISION: Our children do not have unsupervised access to the internet and our younger children only access pre-selected sites.  Our older children work within specific guidance and instructions.

CURRICULUM: As part of our Computing curriculum we give children clear learning opportunities about safe and responsible behaviour when working online.  This covers a range of activities which children and young people may wish to do online such s use of search engines, what to do if they encounter inappropriate or offensive material or things that make them feel uncomfortable, responsible communication, protection of personal information and so on.

PRACTISE: The school has provided the dB Primary learning platform for use in an out of school.  This allows children to learn and practise the skills and understanding for safe and responsible internet use with a safe and secure environment not accessible to outside users or allowing access to sites or individuals not included in the system.  The platform allows children to email classmates with a monitored email system, present a simple blog, manage their own home page, manage their files as well as completing home learning tasks.

What Parents Should Consider?

KEY MESSAGE: When thinking about online safety the key message is "Know what your children are doing online, talk to them about this and ensure you utilise ways to monitor and protect them from harm."  This is especially important in a society where the opportunities to access online materials via an increasing range of devices and the misuse of the internet, by some people, for illegal purposes.  We would not, in any other circumstances, allo our children free access to unkown materials, images or the opportunity to communicate with unknown individuals, all of which and more are possible via the internet

PARENTAL CONTROLS: Making use of parental controls to limit access to specific, approved sites is highly recommended.  The extent of the limitation can be varied and reduced as your child develops his or her skills and understanding.  The controls can also be used to limit the time children spend online.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Sites such as Facebook, Instagram and similar applications are increasingly popular and the pressure that young people feel to use these, especially if they have siblings or friends who have been permitted access, is considerable.  However the majority of these sites have age limits above that of primary age childrebn.  In order to access these it is necessary to provide false information.

The key problems with social media are the freedom to share personal information and images, that the identity of others users may be false or unknown and even with privacy settings in place unknown individuals may still gain sight of information or images of your child.  

Another problem is that children and young people may post things on line which they consider to be "fun" or as "a joke" but which could readily be misinterpreted or even offensive to others.  As soon as anything is place on a social media site, regardless of security settings, it is in the public domain either directly or indirectly.  There are an increasing number of cases of internet users facing charges as a result of material, images or text that they published intending them to be humorous and private.

Further Advice & Information

There are a great many websites offering training, guidance and advice about online safety.  Just be sure to check that advice refers to UK law and guidance.  Below are some links to a number of websites which we hope you will find useful.  Please be aware that these sites are developed and maintained by external agencies; the school has no control over and can take no responsibility for the content.  Click on the logos to visit the sites.

Internet Safety School

top_logo1

This site has been used by other local schools in support of specific online training.  In particular their Parents' Information Pack is worth a read.  Click the file image below to access this directly.

files-folder-icon.jpg.pagespeed.ce.fzgTQMtIgy

NSPCC

download

There are some very useful questions and guidance on this site which guide parents through a number of steps they can take to help protect your children online.

Get Safe Online

get-safe-online-logo

This site describes itself as "... the UK’s leading source of unbiased, factual and easy-to-understand information on online safety."

The section specifically focussed on protecting children may be access via the link below.

files-folder-icon.jpg.pagespeed.ce.fzgTQMtIgy(1)