At Downend School we realise that the online world is integral to how children stay in touch with their friends, and access to the internet is now available like never before. However, we also appreciate that with this use of technology, can come many risks, and that is why we build Online Safety into our curriculum at all levels, to ensure our students understand how to remain safe online.
On this page we offer a range of advice and support for parents on how you can help support your child with e-safety at home and on their personal devices.
CEOP helps any child or young person under the age of 18 who is being pressured, forced or tricked into taking part in sexual activity of any kind. This can be something that has taken place either online or in ‘the real world’, or both. The CEOP Safety Centre has clear information and advice on what can be reported to CEOP, the reporting process and what will happen if you do decide to make a report. You can visit the CEOP Safety Centre and make a report directly to CEOP by clicking the Click CEOP button.
Do you have any concerns regarding your child on the internet? For more information, please see the following websites:
Online safety and social media
Online safety for our children is a matter which concerns us all as adults, and particularly as parents and carers. Using the internet is a part of modern-day life which offers enormous opportunities for learning and social interaction, but at the same time has undeniable risks.
Within school, we do all that we can to ensure that our pupils understand the risks attached to online activity. At the same time, we spend far too many hours trying to unpick issues that may have arisen from the misuse of social media outside school, which then causes issues in school. We thought it might be helpful to give you some guidance which you can then use with your children to try and prevent problems from arising.
Social media apps
There are age limits for most social media apps, for a reason. The age-limit for What’sApp, TikTok, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter (and many others) is 13. If your child is younger than 13, you should not allow them to download these apps. Younger children are far more vulnerable to being manipulated online, and will take any unpleasant language or behaviour very hard.
Have a look at OpenViewEducation.co.uk for really helpful guidance about these and other apps.
Distributing offensive material
It is against the law to distribute offensive material online, including private sexual or pornographic images, or grossly offensive writing, including racist, sexist or homophobic comments. This means that, if your child is sent something offensive and then passes it on, they have broken the law.
If, as is usually the case, your child’s phone contract has been taken out in your name, you will be considered legally responsible for your child’s use of the phone.
Talk to your child
Take time to talk explicitly to your child about these issues, so that they understand exactly the level of responsibility required in using social media responsibly. Discuss with them what you would or wouldn’t send on social media, and the dangers of writing something in a message that one would never say to a person face to face. Sending unpleasant messages or images, or exiting someone from a social group are bullying behaviour which none of us thinks is okay.
What will school do?
As well as trying to educate all our pupils about online safety, we will take action if it is brought to our attention that an issue that may have started in school has then been taken ‘online’ out of school. If something starts online out of school, and then causes problems in school, we will deal with the incident in school. We cannot, however, be responsible for general online activity that happens out of school, either in the evenings, at weekends or during the holidays.