The Internet has become an important part of children’s lives, enabling them to research school projects, talk to their friends and access information from around the world. Increasing provision of the Internet in and out of schools brings with it the need to ensure that learners remain safe. Internet development is constantly evolving into ever more innovative areas with many websites enabling amazing creativity and interaction between peers.
Unfortunately though, there are times when Internet use can have a negative effect on children.
Parents, carers and adults in schools should be aware of the potential dangers and be taking measures to ensure safe usage by all.
Children at Meon Junior School use the Internet on a regular basis as part of their learning. In school, during ICT lessons we have regular E-safety activities to remind children of the importance of keeping themselves safe online.
At home, many children are often given unsupervised access to the Internet. This, potentially, allows them to access all kinds of content (both good and bad) and bring it into their homes.
Here are a few tips:
Keep your computer in a shared area – Talk to your child about what they are doing online and, if possible, set up your computer in a shared area at home so that you can always see what sites are being visited.
Facebook and all other Social Media Sites – Are you aware that many of these sites have a minimum age limit of 13, so our pupils should NOT be using them?
Google Safe Search – This is designed to screen sites that contain sexually explicit content and remove them from your search results. While no filter is 100% accurate, SafeSearch helps you avoid content you may prefer not to see or would rather your children did not stumble across. See the link in the Helpful Information cell to Google Lock Safe Search on this page.
By default, Moderate SafeSearch is turned on, which helps keep explicit images out of your search results. If you prefer you can change your setting to Strict filtering to help filter out explicit text as well as images. You can modify your computer’s SafeSearch settings by clicking on Search settings at the top right of the Google homepage.
Similarly, YouTube offer a filtering search and the instructions on how to set this up are also in the Helpful Information cell on this page.
Explore E-safety sites – There are lots of useful e-safety sites. They are great fun to explore, so why not browse through them with your children?
Below are links to recommended E-Safety sites for parents and carers and attachments which you can download and organisations that can be contacted if you are concerned about safety while online .