As we continue to attempt to support our students and families as best we can, we have collated some top tips and web-links for parents/carers to consider regarding the use of the internet/social media and the potential issues an increase in this media could cause.
If you have specific concerns relating to safeguarding issues, please continue to contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead at Fairfield. (James Barnes – [email protected]). See here for information about the wider Safeguarding Team.
Top tips for E-Safety:
Parental controls are a great way of controlling the content your child can access. They allow you to block selected websites and email addresses by adding them to a filter list. They also prevent young people from searching certain words. Child-friendly search engines such as Yahoo Kids or Ask Jeeves for Kids lets your children search the internet safely as they filter out inappropriate sites and content. Contact your ISP (Internet Service Provider) to find out any child safety measures they offer if you are not sure.
Setting ground rules with your child
It’s a good idea to set some ground rules with your child when thinking about their safety online and include their input when doing so. Here at FHS we teach our students to be digital citizens and speak to them about the potential risks online to help them understand the dangers. It would help us if you could tell your child:
- Not to give out any personal information to people online such as names, addresses, phone numbers, bank details, passwords
- To only visit chat rooms that are fully moderated/supervised
- Not to meet an online friend in person without you knowing/allowing them to do so
- Not to have an email/screen-name address that references their age or gender
- Be mindful when posting status updates, photos or video on social networking sites
- To tell you if they experience anything inappropriate that worries them
- Take regular breaks from the computer
Tips for family Internet usage
An easy way to make sure your child is safe online is to have the computer in a family room with the screen in view. Draw up house rules such as Internet usage hours and sites that are off limits. It’s also never best to download unknown files from the Internet unless you know it is from a reliable source. The majority of computers and other digital technologies all now have measures in place to protect your child’s safety online and these, coupled with your input, should mean our young people are better equipped when surfing the net.
Please see the ‘Internet of Things‘ which raises awareness of internet-enabled devices you may not have even considered to be part of the mix, and how to use these safely with your child.
https://www.childnet.com/resources/family-agreement – A family agreement is a great way to start a conversation with your whole family about how you all use the internet, and to start discussions together around how to behave in a positive way when online, whether this is inside or outside the home.
https://reportharmfulcontent.com/ – If your child experiences or sees online abuse, impersonation, threats or other harmful content, you can report it using this free and easy to use Report Harmful Content tool.
https://www.childnet.com/resources/screen-time-and-healthy-balance-quick-activities – This resource is a collection of quick activities to help children recognise the signs they may experience when they’ve been online too long and the importance of balancing online and offline activities.
https://swgfl.org.uk/resources/checklists/ – Social Media Checklists
https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/ – If your child is anxious or worried about COVID, there are things you can do to help.
www.o2.co.uk/help/nspcc – O2 has partnered with NSPCC to help keep young people safe with articles on everything from online bullying, to the apps your child is using.