E-safety means electronic safety. It is about protecting young people in the digital world and ensuring they feel safe when accessing new technology.
E-safety is important because it safeguards the concerns of children and young people. It also emphasizes the importance and use of new technologies in a positive way as well as encouraging young people to develop safer online behaviours.
At Pippins School we are committed to safeguarding and take online safety very seriously. Below you can read some simple information about how to keep your child safe online. If you have any concerns, please speak to your child’s class teacher, or contact the headteacher.
Social networking sites, such as MySpace, Bebo and Facebook, are very popular with children, even those as young as 8 and 9. These types of sites allow children to be incredibly creative online, keep in touch with their friends and express themselves using a whole range of different media and applications such as video, photos, music, and chat.
However, it’s important to recognise that while these are fun and offer great possibilities for children, there are potential risks including cyberbullying, inappropriate sexual contact with children and young people and the misuse of personal information.
As a parent, carer or teacher it’s really important to familiarise yourself with social networking services. Most sites stipulate a minimum user age of 13 or 14, although some interactive sites are designed specifically for younger children. By understanding these sites you can help to support your children in choosing an appropriate site and using it in a safe and constructive way.
Social networking sites, alongside sites, which enable users to put up their own pictures, text and videos (known as user-generated content) such as YouTube, blogging sites, and interactive games sites for example are part of a social and technological revolution that is known as Web 2.0. Web 2.0 is characterised by the ease with which anyone can produce and publish their own content and link with others.Young people especially love this new environment because they can have a powerful voice to express their identity and opinions and many are using it to good effect. For example, some musicians and bands have launched themselves entirely on the strength of this new stage. And all this is for free and with just one password – is it any wonder why young people love it?
Top Tips (From CEOP)
Watch Thinkuknow films and cartoons with your child. The Thinkuknow site has films, games and advice for children from five all the way to 16.
- Encourage your child to go online and explore! There is a wealth of age-appropriate sites online for your children. Encourage them to use sites which are fun, educational and that will help them to develop online skills.
- Keep up-to-date with your child’s development online. Children grow up fast and they will be growing in confidence and learning new skills daily. It’s important that as your child learns more, so do you.
- Set boundaries in the online world just as you would in the real world. Think about what they might see, what they share, who they talk to and how long they spend online. It is important to discuss boundaries at a young age to develop the tools and skills children need to enjoy their time online.
- Keep all equipment that connects to the internet in a family space. For children of this age, it is important to keep internet use in family areas so you can see the sites your child is using and be there for them if they stumble across something they don’t want to see.
- Know what connects to the internet and how. Nowadays even the TV connects to the internet. Make sure you’re aware of which devices that your child uses connect to the internet, such as their phone or games console. Also, find out how they are accessing the internet – is it your connection, or a neighbour’s wifi? This will affect whether the safety setting you set are being applied.
- Use parental controls on devices that link to the internet, such as the TV, laptops, computers, games consoles and mobile phones. Parental controls are not just about locking and blocking, they are a tool to help you set appropriate boundaries as your child grows and develops. They are not the answer to your child’s online safety, but they are a good start and they are not as difficult to install as you might think. Service providers are working hard to make them simple, effective and user friendly. Find your service provider and learn how to set your controls.
- Cybernet Smart
- UK Safer Internet Safety
- Kid Smart E Safety
- KOKO- Kids OK! Online
- NSPCC Online Safety
- Think You Know for Children
- Think You Know for Parents