Online Safety and Advice for Parents
Click here to see the school’s online safety policy.
There are two members of staff responsible for online safety: Mrs McGettigan and Miss Zoey Diemer.
The impact of the internet has been so profound on our lives, that all schools are presented with the challenge of ensuring that children can be safe and responsible as citizens in a virtual world as well as the real one. As adults and educators, we are very conscious of the fact that when our children have grown in adults, the world that they will experience is not one that we can see right now. This is particularly true when it comes to the impact of the internet.
Promoting Online Safety with the Kapow Curriculum
At St. John Rigby, the “Kapow” computing curriculum is embedded from Years R – 6. Within each year group, there are age-appropriate modules and topics which allow children to develop in their ability to manage themselves safely when online, as well as discrete units about Online safety.
Within the “Kapow” curriculum, pupils are taught how to take responsibility for their own Internet access and are given clear objectives for Internet use.
- Pupils are taught how to evaluate Internet content and how to validate information before accepting that it is necessarily accurate.
- Older pupils are taught to acknowledge the source of information, when using Internet material for their own use.
- Pupils are made aware that the writer of an e-mail or the author of a Web page might not be the person claimed.
- Pupils are encouraged to tell a teacher immediately if they encounter any material that makes them feel uncomfortable.
Safer Internet Day
Safer Internet day is celebrated each February over the whole school to embed the Online safety advice, through the SMART acronym:
- Meet (never meet)
- Accepting (not accepting requests)
- Reliable (information)
- Tell an adult
Online Safety Events
With many older children, safe internet use includes the increased time spent on mobile devices and, in particular the use of social networking apps.
Across Key Stage 2, the following events have taken place over the last few academic years in order to raise awareness of online safety:
- Visit from MK Safety Centre: full day of workshops on keeping safe online, both in person and virtually.
- Visit from PC Richard Denton (half day), from Bedfordshire Police. PC Denton and his team liaise directly with many Bedford schools and is able to advise on local issues that may affect our pupils.
- “In the Net” theatre group - a play organised by Bedford Borough and hosted by St. Thomas More. It was able to present many of the internet safety issues in an age appropriate way.
All of these events are based on the ongoing advice given to schools by these agencies:
Our online safety lead is currently in the process of preparing us for “NOS Certified School” accreditation through the National Online Safety Centre.