New technologies inspire children to be creative, communicate and learn. However, while the internet is a great resource, it is important that children and young people are protected from the risks they may encounter. The use of technology has become a significant component of many safeguarding issues. Child sexual exploitation; radicalisation; sexual predation: technology often provides the platform that facilitates harm. At Hazeley we have developed an effective approach to online safety to ensure we protect and educate our community in their use of technology and establishes mechanisms so we can identify, intervene and escalate any incident where appropriate.
The breadth of issues classified within online safety is considerable, but can be categorised into three areas of risk:
• content: being exposed to illegal, inappropriate or harmful material;
• contact: being subjected to harmful online interaction with other users; and
• conduct: personal online behaviour that increases the likelihood of, or causes, harm.
What can you do as a parent/carer to keep your child safe online?
With technology changing on what can seem like a weekly basis, often our young people are more up to date than we are; it can be daunting to know what to do to keep them using the internet safely. An easy way to ensure you know what your child is doing online and to make sure they know how to stay safe is to get them to take you through the steps they would follow to do three things on every app they use.
Do they know how to:
- Block someone they don’t want as a ‘friend’?
- Change their privacy settings? (And then check their settings are appropriately secure)
- Report something or someone that makes them feel uncomfortable/offensive?
Should you ever have any concerns about your child’s online activity, please get in touch with us, we will be able to offer help and support and signpost to other resources and agencies where appropriate.
Online Safety UPDATE – Snapchat Maps
You will be aware from media coverage about a function in the popular online app Snapchat called Snap Map. Snap Map lets users share their exact location with people on their “friends” list in real time. As many other schools, we are concerned that this function poses some serious safeguarding concerns, by putting children at risk as they could be could be tracked on the map. The feature is opt-in and can be switched off at any time.
Further information about the Snapchat Maps is available from BBC media sources: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-40509281
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/technology-40511947/snapchat-maps-what-you-need-to-know-about-snap-maps-the-latest-addition-to-the-app – this is a young person friendly version
CEOP have produced a parent guide which we would encourage you to read to understand about the app, how it works and how to change privacy settings:
How to switch off Snap Map location sharing
- When in photo-taking mode, pinch the screen to open Snap Map
- Touch the settings cog in the top right corner of the screen
- Tap “Ghost Mode” to switch off location sharing
- Photos and videos posted to Snapchat’s public ‘Our Story’ will still be discoverable on the map
Our Online Safety co-ordinator, Mr Nott, has compiled some useful information for parents to help safeguard their children whilst they are using the internet.
Please click on the links below for further help.
Click on any of the links below to take you to information about how to support your child to safely use one of these social media platforms.