As a school, we are committed to ensuring that our children are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need to use the Internet safely. We regularly speak with the children about how to stay safe online. As a parent, you can work in partnership with us to help your children to further develop these skills. The best way to help your child to be a safe when using the internet and new technologies (including smart phones and tablets) is to talk to them and make sure they understand these simple rules:
- You should never give out personal details to online ‘friends’. Use a nickname when logging on and don’t share full name, email address, mobile number, school name and any photos, including photos of family or friends – any picture or video online can be changed or shared without permission.
- Talk to your child about what they are doing online and who they are talking to. Get them to show you how to use things you are not familiar with. Keeping the computer in a family room means that you can share your child’s online experience, they are less likely to act inappropriately (i.e. via webcam) and their online ‘friends’ will see they are in a family room.
- If your child receives a message that upsets them, remind them not to reply, they should save the message and show you or another trusted adult.
- Spam and junk emails and texts are not true, don’t reply or send them to anyone else, just delete them.
- Don’t open files sent from people you don’t know. They could contain a virus, or worse – an inappropriate image or film.
- An online ‘friend’ is anyone you have not met in real life; no matter how long you have been friends with them.
- Help your child to understand that some people lie online and that it’s better to keep online ‘friends’ online. They should never meet up with any online ‘friends’ without an adult they trust.
- Make sure they know how to block someone online and report them if they feel uncomfortable.
- The social networking site Facebook’s policy is that no child under the age of 13 should have their own profile. As such, as a school, in the interest of child protection and online safety, we highly recommend that our families adhere to this policy.