Online safety is extremely important. The school’s internet service is tailored for use by primary school children and provides a secure and safe network. You can find more information on our internet service and some advice for families on safe internet use at swgfl.org.uk/products-services/online-safety/resources.
We ask our children to sign their Acceptable Use Agreement. This is designed to encourage behaviour that will help them stay safe online and become responsible users of IT. We ask parents to go through these agreements with their children, as we believe it is very important for school and parents to be working together on this issue.
Useful links for parents
www.childnet.com/parents-and-carers is full of award-winning and user-friendly resources for use with and without your children.
Digital five-a-day from the Children's Commissioner: easy to follow, practical steps for children and parents to achieve a healthy and balanced digital diet
Parent info is a collaboration between Parentzone and the NCA providing support and guidance for parents from leading experts and organisations.
Internet matters provides age-specific online safety checklists, guides on how to set parental controls on a range of devices, and a host of practical tips to help children get the most out of their digital world.
Monthly online safety newsletter for parents
Follow the links below for up to date and easy-to-understand advice for parents who want to help their children stay safe in all online situations, including on their phones and gaming:
Online Safety Assembly delivered by Andri Nicolaou
Andri Nicolaou is the Child Exploitation prevention officer for Operation TOPAZ and works with Avon and Somerset Police and she delivered an assembly to our KS2 children about the importance of staying safe online.
Please see below a video for parents in relation to the assembly where Andri discusses child exploitation, child crimal exploitation, social media and what parents can do.
Avon and Somerset Police have a YouTube channel called ASC Cyber Protect! Useful videos regarding online safety and cyber protection advice are posted to this channel: https://www.youtube.com/@asccyberprotect5903.
The videos for parents cover topics including:
• Exploitation of children online
• Technical protective and safety measures available
• Tips on starting a conversation with children about the internet and how to use it safely.
Protecting children on social networks
https://www.net-aware.org.uk/ This an up-to-date guide from O2 and the NSPCC to the most popular social networks used by children. It includes minimum age requirements and reviews of suitability for children and young people. This document shows minimum age requirements for a selection of the social media apps that your children may be asking to use. For example, the minimum age for Instagram, Snapchat, Tik Tok, Kik, Facebook and Twitter is 13.
For more information on keeping your child safe on Tik Tok, please see this helpful factsheet.
Advice on games and parental controls
Please see this guide from July 2023 that will help you set up parental controls to provide your child with a safer online environment. Parental controls can help to protect your child from seeing something that they shouldn’t - although it is important to emphasise that no system is effective all of the time so it is important to engage with your child and talk to them about their online life regularly.
PEGI age ratings are used to ensure that entertainment content, including games, films, tv shows and mobile apps, is clearly labelled with a minimum age recommendation based on the content they have. These age ratings provide guidance to consumers, parents in particular, to help them decide whether or not to buy a particular product for a child. This link explains what age ratings for games really mean: pegi.info/what-do-the-labels-mean Please also see a useful document here for parents about the gaming that primary school-aged children are likely to be doing. This was prepared by one of our student teachers who games himself, with the intention of helping parents to help children stay safe online, and to be able to set spending limits and controls on unsuitable content.
The company National Online Safety has published a series of platform guides aimed at parents and schools that advise how to deal with most of the popular social media and gaming platforms that children are using, such as Fortnite, Fifa and Clash of Clans. You can see the resources on their website or follow them on Twitter.
From the Department for Education, advice for parents and carers on dealing with cyberbullying.
Useful links for children
Please check the content of these websites before using them with your children.
www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents is the site run by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection centre, part of the police. Again, this is full of engaging and accessible material.
www.getsafeonline.org is a very practical site that aims to provide computer users and small businesses with free, independent user-friendly advice that will allow them to use the internet confidently, safely and securely.
www.digizen.org is run by Childnet to provide information about using social network sites and social media sites creatively and safely, with advice on preventing and responding to cyberbullying.
The NSPCC website contains general advice for parents and younger children on online grooming (and more): https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/child-abuse-and-neglect/ contains information on grooming and online abuse, and suggests ways of discussing these matters with your child in an age-appropriate way.