Children within Amber Valley are now spending an average of 5 hours per day online.
The Covid 19 pandemic increased our reliance on online services, as such our habits have changed. We recognise that the online world provides everyone with many opportunities; however it can also present risks and challenges
Working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare and in helping young people to be responsible in their approach to online safety.
Within school, we focus on a number of areas when discussing online behaviours, conversations that can be further explored and reinforced at home in consideration of the points below;
Keep talking and stay interested in what they’re doing. Don’t be afraid to bring up challenging issues like inappropriate content, sexting, pornography and cyberbullying. It could be embarrassing, but you’ll both benefit from the subjects being out in the open.
Keep their information private
Your child can set privacy settings on most social networking sites so that only close friends can search for them, tag them in a photograph or share what they’ve posted. Talk to them about their personal information, how it can be misused and how they can also take ownership of it.
Stay safe on the move
Use safe settings on all mobile devices but be aware that if your child is accessing the internet using public WiFi, filters to block inappropriate content may not be active. Some outlets, like McDonald’s, are part of family friendly WiFi schemes so look out for RDI Friendly WiFi symbols when you’re out and about. You can also use parental control apps or software on devices to help limit harms on the go.
Talk about online reputation
Let them know that anything they upload, email or message could stay around forever online. Remind them they should only do things online that they wouldn’t mind you, their teacher or a future employer seeing. Get them to think about creating a positive digital footprint.
Don’t give in
Remind them how important it is not to give in to peer pressure to send inappropriate comments or images. Point them to the Send this instead and Zipit apps which will help them deal with these types of requests.
Remind them of how they can report any online activity which causes concern, either to a trusted adult or via reporting tools on individual platforms.
It is recommended that parents/carers use parental controls to monitor the online activity of their child(ren). The NSPCC has a wealth of information to support parents/carers Keeping children safe online | NSPCC
Internet Matters website also has some useful checklists to help keep your child safe online
Our recent online safety newsletters are also linked on this page.