Help and advice for families in a digital world
E-Safety encompasses Internet technologies and electronic communications such as mobile phones and wireless technology. It highlights the need to educate children and young people about the benefits and risks of using new technology and provides safeguards and awareness for users to enable them to control their online experiences.
The school’s e-safety policy will operate in conjunction with other policies.
E-Safety depends on effective practice at a number of levels:
- Responsible ICT use by all staff and pupils; encouraged by education and made explicit through published policies.
- Sound implementation of e-safety policy in both administration and curriculum, including secure school network design and use.
- Safe and secure broadband from the Rotherham Grid for Learning including the effective management of content filtering.
Why is Internet Use Important?
The purpose of Internet use in school is to raise educational standards, to promote pupil achievement, to support the professional work of staff and to enhance the school’s management information and administration systems.
Internet use is part of the statutory curriculum and a necessary tool for learning. It is an essential element in 21st century life for education, business and social interaction. Access to the Internet is therefore an entitlement for pupils who show a responsible and mature approach to its use. Our school has a duty to provide pupils with quality Internet access
Pupils will use the Internet outside school and will need to learn how to evaluate Internet information and to take care of their own safety and security.
How does Internet Use Benefit Education?
Benefits of using the Internet in education include:
- access to world-wide educational resources including museums and art galleries;
- inclusion in the National Education Network which connects all UK schools;
- educational and cultural exchanges between pupils world-wide;
- access to experts in many fields for pupils and staff;
- professional development for staff through access to national developments, educational materials and effective curriculum practice;
- collaboration across support services and professional associations;
- improved access to technical support including remote management of
- networks and automatic system updates;
- exchange of curriculum and administration data with the Local Authority and DCSF; access to learning wherever and whenever convenient.
How can Internet Use Enhance Learning?
- The school Internet access is designed expressly for pupil use and includes filtering appropriate to the age of pupils.
- Pupils are taught what Internet use is acceptable and what is not and given clear objectives for Internet use.
- Internet access is planned to enrich and extend learning activities.
- Staff guide pupils in on-line activities that will support learning outcomes planned for the pupils’ age and maturity.
- Pupils are educated in the effective use of the Internet in research, including the skills of knowledge location, retrieval and evaluation.
World Wide Web
- If staff or pupils discover unsuitable sites, the URL (address), time, content is reported to the Local Authority helpdesk via the ICT Co-ordinator.
- School ensures that the use of Internet derived materials by pupils and staff complies with copyright law.
- Pupils are taught to be critically aware of the materials they are shown and how to validate information before accepting its accuracy.
- Pupils may only use class e-mail accounts on the school system.
- Pupils must immediately tell a teacher if they receive offensive e-mail.
- Pupils must not reveal personal details of themselves or others in e-mail communication, or arrange to meet anyone without specific permission.
- Access in school to external personal e-mail accounts is blocked.
- E-mail sent to external organisations should be written carefully and authorised before sending, in the same way as a letter written on school headed paper.
- The forwarding of chain letters is not permitted.
- Access to social networking sites and newsgroups in school are blocked.
- Pupils are advised never to give out personal details of any kind which may identify them or their location
- Pupils are advised not to place personal photos on any social network space.
- Pupils are advised on security and encouraged to set passwords, deny access to unknown individuals and instructed how to block unwanted communications. Pupils are encouraged to invite known friends only and deny access to others.
The school works in partnership with the Local Authority, Becta and the Internet Service Provider to ensure filtering systems are as effective as possible.
Managing Emerging Technologies
- Emerging technologies are examined for educational benefit and a risk assessment will be carried out before use in school is allowed.
- Mobile phones will not be used for personal use during lessons or formal school time. The sending of abusive or inappropriate text messages is forbidden.
Published Content and the School Web Site
- The contact details on the Web site will be the school address, e-mail and telephone number. Staff or pupils personal information will not be published.
- The headteacher or nominees will take overall editorial responsibility and ensure that content is accurate and appropriate.
Publishing Pupils’ Images and Work
- Photographs that include pupils will be selected carefully and will not enable individual pupils to be clearly identified.
- Pupils’ full names will not be used anywhere on the Web site or Blog, particularly in association with photographs.
- Written permission from parents or carers will be obtained before photographs of pupils are published on the school Web site.
- Work can only be published with the permission of the pupil and parents.
Information System Security
- School ICT systems capacity and security will be reviewed regularly.
- Virus protection will be installed and updated regularly.
- Security strategies will be discussed with the Local Authority.
Protecting Personal Data
Personal data will be recorded, processed, transferred and made available according to the Data Protection Act 1998.
- The school will take all reasonable precautions to prevent access to inappropriate material. However, due to the international scale and linked Internet content, it is not possible to guarantee that unsuitable material will never appear on a school computer. Neither the school nor Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council can accept liability for the material accessed, or any consequences of Internet access.
- The school will audit ICT use to establish if the e-safety policy is adequate and that the implementation of the e-safety policy is appropriate.
Handling e-safety Complaints
- Complaints of Internet misuse are dealt with by a senior member of staff.
- Any complaint about staff misuse must be referred to the headteacher.
- Complaints of a child protection nature must be dealt with in accordance with school child protection procedures.
- Pupils and parents will be informed of the complaints procedure.
- Discussions will be held with the Police Youth Crime Reduction Officer to establish procedures for handling potentially illegal issues.
Communication of Policy
- Rules for Internet access will be posted in all networked rooms.
- Pupils will be informed that Internet use will be monitored.
- All staff will be given the School e-Safety Policy and its importance explained.
- Staff will be made aware that Internet traffic can be monitored and traced to the individual user. Discretion and professional conduct is essential.
- Parents’ attention will be drawn to the School e-Safety Policy in newsletters, the school brochure and on the school Web site.
Useful links for parents
Childnet International’s Kidsmart website has a section for young people aged 11 plus, dealing with mobiles, file-sharing, chat, trackback (for example, digital footprints) and privacy.
The site also includes games, competitions and a gallery of young people’s artwork on how to stay safe online.
It reinforces the SMART rules, and has additional sections for teachers and for parents and carers.
Bullying Online is an online help and advice service combating all forms of bullying. Sections for pupils, parents and schools cover the subject of cyberbullying, with advice on topics including:
- – how to stay safe on the internet
- – mobile phone bullying and happy slapping
- – dangerous websites
- – abusive websites.
Bullying Online also provides an email service for pupils in need of further help and advice.
This website, developed by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre, provides information for young people on how to stay safe online. It covers various topics, including:
- – mobiles
- – gaming
- – social networking
- – chatting
- – podcasts
- – blogs
- – P2P TV.
Each of the parents’ topics includes a summary of what’s good, what’s bad and what parents can do to help their children stay safe.
In all areas of the site, there are prominent links to the CEOP ‘report abuse’ page where you can make a complaint or report a problem.
At our school we adhere to the e-safety charters to help keep our children safe. The E-Safety Charters were developed to provide children with the basic principles of how to stay safe and be responsible when online.