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Online Safety

Parents and Carers helpful links and advice.

“School closures and strict containment measures mean more and more families are relying on technology and digital solutions to keep children learning, entertained and connected to the outside world, but not all children have the necessary knowledge, skills and resources to keep themselves safe online.”

More than 1.5 billion children and young people have been affected by school closures worldwide. Many of these students are now taking classes as well as socialising more online. Spending more time on virtual  platforms can leave children vulnerable to online exploitation and grooming, as predators look to exploit the COVID-19 pandemic. A lack of face-to-face contact with friends and family may lead to heightened  risk-taking such as sending images, while increased and unstructured time online may expose children to potentially harmful and violent content as well as greater risk of cyberbullying.” Global Partnership to End Violence Executive Director Dr. Howard Taylor

In today’s world, it is more important than ever that children know how to keep themselves safe. We make e-safety a high priority within our school community. However, now children are being forced to stay at home more, it is incredibly important that parents take the time to talk to their children and set rules within their homes. We strongly suggest that you put a filter in place at home to prevent your children accessing adult sites, and that you monitor your child’s computer access.

E-safety is a hugely important issue both in school and at home.  In school the sites children are able to access are strictly filtered and their activity on the computers and ipads closely monitored.

We understand that this if more difficult at home and as such offer advice for parents on how to keep children safe online.

Some of these are listed below, but if you require any further information please contact Mrs Lane or Mrs Rising, our E-safety co-ordinators via the school office.

Top Tips for keeping your children safe online

1. Use the parental safety feature offered by your internet provider. Here you can set time limits, restrict access to sites and specify age limits.

2. Ensure that mobile devices have the safety settings activated

3. Monitor use by checking the history in all Internet enabled devices.

4. Don't be fooled by your child telling you they are the 'only' one without a social media page, they are not! Please keep in mind that anything posted on the Internet, never fully disappears even after deletion. There are age limits attached to these sites for a reason.

5. PEGI ratings are issued to inform you that the content is unsuitable for children below the age specified. Again don't let your child pressure you into thinking they are the 'only' one without a particular game.

Online Safety Update

As a lot of our children are currently having to work from home remotely, they are spending more time in front of a screen and using the Internet than they would in school.  This is beneficial at this time as it allows us to provide teaching and work for the children.   

Because of this increase in the use of technology, we felt that it was important to send you a few online safety reminders that may help to protect your child in this ever-changing world.   We will also be celebrating Online Safety Day on the 9th February.  More details on that to follow.

I have attached to this email a range of information sheets relating to the most influential games and apps that children are currently accessing online and are causing us some concern.  These include the game 'Among Us' and the chat sites 'Discord' and 'Omegel'.  In school we have been supporting some children and families dealing with issues relating to these.   

We understand that these issues can cause some difficult conversations at home, so please do not hesitate to contact staff through the year group emails if you would like support in dealing with anything that may arise.  We are able to offer support to children and families ourselves or can signpost you to further help and information. 

We suggest that you check your child’s devices and delete apps that are inappropriate. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact myself or Mrs Rising via the office and we will be happy to help.

Thank you for your continued support.

The NSPCC  have great help pages for parents to browse and discuss with their child.

https://www.net-aware.org.uk/networks/

Digital Parenting is a magazine full of helpful guides and tips.If you would like to find out more please click the link.

The Essex Safeguarding Children Board has links to organisations and information covering a range of topics, including online safety and child exploitation.

The 2 Johns – former Essex police detectives - have produced a set of informative YouTube videos to explain the steps you can take to keep your child safe online. Stay up to date with the latest videos from The 2 Johns.

https://esafetytraining.org/upcoming-events/

https://www.essex.gov.uk/news/every-family-matters-lets-talk-online-safety-with-the-2-johns

For more information on how to keep your family safe and well, visit the Staying Well Children and Families page.

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