Guernica (after Picasso) - Bullying in the Playground - Year 5 - drawing and collage on canvas

'There is growing concern that as well as addicting users, technology is contributing to ‘continual partial attention’, severely limiting people’s ability to focus, and possibly lowering IQ.'

Paul Lewis - The Guardian October 2017

top 10 safety tips for families

keeping children safe in a digital world

  1. maintain a basic understanding of computers

  2. understand the digital safety issues that children face

  3. monitor tools and programmes that children are using online

  4. restrict how much time children are spending online,

  5. communicate and be vigilant

  6. establish ground rules to keep children safe online

  7. apply usage policies and guidelines for social media

  8. utilise resources to help protect children online

  9. set ground rules for mobile technology

  10. help children to understand e-safety.

To these, we would add to just one more:

  1. avoid any screen use before bed time and in bed

With children online, there comes a risk of online harm or abuse. Children's online activity continues to be a concern to adults at home and in school.

If a child ... is spending 3 hours or more a day on a screen they will develop mental health issues, anxiety or depression.

Professor Barry Carpenter OBE


'Everyone is distracted' ... 'All of the time.'

Justin Rosenstein - creator of the Facebook ‘like’ button.

A-Z Guides for Parents

keeping children safe on-line

If an App has an age limit this is the MINIMUM age a child could use the App safely.

02 and NSPCC online safety helpline 0808 800 5002 (9am-7pm)

Parent's Guide to Internet Safety

NAHT advice for switched on conversations about technology with your child

E-safety in School

We use the internet and technology to enhance learning. We include e-safety in the curriculum as part of ICT and Personal, Health and Social Education, including Sex and Relationships Education.

When logging on, pupils click to agree to terms and conditions before accessing our server or the Internet. A 'firewall' restricts searches meaning sites including some social media sites like Facebook cannot be accessed by staff or children in school. Nevertheless software is never a catch-all and our first port of call for e-safety is to teach safe use. Safe use includes understanding that online activity is not private. Safe use teaches children that individuals are responsible for what they post, view and participate in. Safe use includes only using apps and sites that are appropriate for your age. We strongly recommend that as primary age pupils, our children only message each other electronically through Google Hangouts linked to their school @kingsmead email address.

stranger danger

The risk of meeting unsafe people is far higher online than out in the community.

Children should be taught and learn that the person they think they are talking to online may not be the person they are talking to. Children might have met an online friend, think they're a child their age when in fact the person can be a much older person, an adult, online because they intend to harm or exploit vulnerable children.

This means it is much more important to teach about peer pressure. It is also more important that adults at home and in school to do all we can to prevent children encountering content they are too young to process. Many sites with content aimed at children have a minimum age of 13 or even older. On these sites children can see and hear content which is beyond their developmental age. They become desensitised to what is risky and inappropriate and so the risk of them becoming vulnerable to grooming increases. This also increases the risk of age inappropriate 'knowledge' finding its way into their play.

A good rule is if an online 'friend' is not the same as a friend you have met and know in real life. We advise against any online friendships for primary age children who are too young to understand the differences or dangers.

Mobile phones and other electronic devices

Experience tells us that children of primary school age are too young to fully understand implications and responsibilities that come with unsupervised access to phones. While we accept that parents and carers know their children best, we will not accept responsibility for distress and issues caused by children's inappropriate use, out of school, of electronic devices. The exception is our Google Hangouts and Google Classroom which are linked to an @kingsmead email address; here we are happy to take responsibility!

We address electronic bullying as we would any other form of bullying or harassment in line with school policy. We would bring misuse of phone messaging to parents' attention in order that they can provide robust challenge, monitoring and support for their children.

We take no responsibility for loss or damage to phones in school. From September 2020 the ban on phones will be enforced and any phones found in school will be confiscated. Our policy for supporting social and emotional development and behaviour references that we regard mobile phones as prohibited items and sets out steps we may take if we believe a mobile phone has been brought into school.

Responsible parents and carers will want to restrict the Apps their children use as well as the time they spend on computers.

www.net-aware.org.uk allows you to insert an app or game name and information is displayed re pros, cons, age appropriateness etc. Many Apps are designed with compulsion to click built in.

Google education

Google Education is an online platform we use to communicate with children and families at home through Google Classrooms; it is our Virtual Learning Environment, our school online. It is invaluable for communication, sharing information, home learning and for those times when children are at home but well enough to learn (e.g. when observing the 48 hour rule after vomiting or diarrhoea or isolating due to a household where someone has COVID symptoms).

We share responsibility for its safe use with children, their parents and carers. We have set up Google Education so children do not receive any advertising. Teachers may post links to internet sites that they have monitored and checked.

We allowed children to use Google Hangouts during lockdowns. Children were isolated from each other and the risk/benefit analysis indicated the benefits of chat online were greater than risks from this social media app where school could see what they were doing.

Information about Google Education and GDPR

School's Responsibility

  • To teach about e-safety including safe use of electronic communication and social media - in Computing and PHSE

  • To teach the productive, safe and positive use of digital technology through Computing lessons and across the curriculum

  • To deal with bullying, including online bullying, in line with school policy

  • To only use online content from sites and apps that is age appropriate

  • To share only information and images, opinions and information that identify individuals in a respectful and positive manner and with permission in line with our data protection policy

  • To keep children's phones in the office for those families who require exceptions to be made regarding school policy on mobile phones

Adults' Responsibility

  • To consider the role model they are providing to their children

  • To monitor their child's computer, phone and tablet use including messages sent and received

  • To consider the advice for children and parents above

  • To deal with inappropriate messaging between children outside of school (e.g. removing their child's access to phones or chat groups)

  • To only allow children access to apps and websites that are age appropriate

  • To not share images, information or opinions about children, parents or staff in school on social media without their consent

  • To ensure phones are kept at home during the school day or make an appointment with the headteacher if they require an exception to be made for their child

Child's Responsibility

  • To use electronic media in a safe, useful and kind way

  • To follow the advice above and learning about e-safety from lessons in school

  • To comply with our internet acceptable use policy when using school equipment during the day, and out of school hours if your activity could affect other children in school (messaging or sharing with them).

  • To only access and use apps and sites that are recommended for children their age

  • To not share any image, opinion or information about any other person without their consent

  • Not to bring phones to school unless they have permission (in which case they take the phone to the office in the morning and collect at the end of the day)

Advice for children (and parents)

  • Never give out personal information (name, phone number, address) to people on the internet you don't know in real life.

  • E-Safe friends are friends you know in the real world, not only through the internet.

  • If you get a message and you're not sure who it is from TELL A TRUSTED ADULT.

  • All your online activity leaves a digital trail - what you have looked at, posted and sent can all be traced back to you.

  • You are responsible for any comments, images and media you post online.

  • Once you post something online, you have lost control of who could share and see it.

  • Just because you are doing something in a private place does not make it a private activity once digital media are used.

  • 'Cyber bullying' - it's still bullying.

The internet, invented by and given freely to humanity by Tim Berners-Lee, has changed the world. Supervised use of the Internet can enrich children's lives. Children, parents, carers and teachers, share responsibility for it being used safely and for good.

‘It is very common for humans to develop things with the best intentions and for them to have unintended, negative consequences.’

Paul Lewis - The Guardian

'Imagine that everything you are typing is being read by the person you are applying to for your first job. Imagine that it's all going to be seen by your parents and your grandparents and your grandchildren as well.'

Tim Berners-Lee