At Ysgol Friars, we recognise the importance of pupils’ being IT literate and knowing how to access information from a variety of sources, including the internet. We have led the way in helping pupils to use IT by investing heavily in computers and giving all pupils access to Microsoft Office 365.
However, we also recognise the need to keep children safe on-line, and we do our best to make them aware of the potential dangers from misusing the internet, social media and messaging, including texting.
We have software in school that enables us to check what pupils are doing and viewing when using school computers. However, we also understand that nowadays young people are likely to spend far more time on-line at home than in school so we’ve developed this support page so that parents and staff are better able to work together to ensure that children are able to get the most out of the internet safely and responsibly.
The internet and other digital information and communications technologies are powerful tools, which open up new opportunities for everyone. These technologies can stimulate discussion, promote creativity and stimulate awareness of context to promote effective learning.
Social media services and apps can also be used as educational tools, but there are important issues to consider including privacy, appropriate content, security and your comfort level with the apps and services. So, the first thing you should do before using any social media service is to understand its privacy settings and norms. Almost all services have some controls over who can see what you post. Some services, including Facebook, allow you to control the audience for each post. Others, including Twitter, have universal settings that control all of your posts.
While the subject of “Internet safety” may seem daunting, it’s not really all that complicated. Much of what young people (and adults too) need to know about protecting themselves online can be summarized in four words: “Think before you post.” Add to that “be kind and respectful” and you’ve pretty much covered the basics of “digital citizenship” in social media.
Below are some guides for parents on various social media services as well as some information links to help parents cope with avoiding and dealing with misuse of modern technology such as Cyber bullying.