e-Safety News & Information
Safeguarding at The Academy
Everyone working at the Academy shares a common objective to keep children and young people safe by active contribution to, and participation in -
- Providing a safe environment for children and young people to learn, develop and feel safe.
- Identifying children and young people who may be at risk of harm.
- Working to support those children and young people identified as being in need or at risk of harm by collaboration with the safeguarding professionals
- Commitment to active participation in all mandatory safeguarding training events as well as regular updates and briefings.
What are we doing at the Academy?
All Internet access at The Academy is filtered, although we can never guarantee that 100% of all offensive content will be blocked. We also monitor all Internet and network use, and any offending images/text or illegal sites will be flagged up and automatically screen-captured, highlighting the user.
Increasingly, we think that it is also important for students to understand the issues involved in online safety, so we are always looking to develop ways to ensure children are safe.
Top 10 Tips for Online Safety
- Never give out personal details online (address, phone number, full name)
- Turn off location settings on cameras or photographs you post online may reveal exactly where you took them (eg, on Google maps)
- Think before you post! Would you say it in real life to someone’s face?
- Remember that nothing can ever be permanently deleted - you leave a digital footprint! Many employers look at applicants online presence.
- Don’t download unknown files or click on suspect web links – they may contain viruses
- Report any concerns or inappropriate content to CEOP using the ‘Report Abuse’ button, including any worrying followers/message senders on social networking sites.
- Watch your language & think about your username
- Think about any photographs you post – avoid adding names and don’t post pictures in your school uniform
- Turn on privacy settings so only trusted friends can see your posts
- Never meet anyone you only know online in real-life – they often aren’t what they say/appear.
Advice to parents:
Autumn 2021 E-safety (Online Safety)
Online Activity (phones, computers) can be a serious risk to children:
The use of technology has become a significant component of many safeguarding issues-
- Child sexual exploitation
- Sexual harassment, and online sexual bullying.
Technology often provides the platform that facilitates harm. With the right support, education and safety measures in place the Internet and new technologies can also bring great benefits, but we must all be vigilant.
www.paceuk.info/ A useful website to engage parents with safety issues.
www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents/ Is the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre. It’s a one-stop-shop for most information about online safety.
www.thinkuknow.co.uk/teachers (excellent resources)
http://educateagainsthate.com/ This is the government website to help parents and professionals understand the risks of children and young people being radicalised by extremists online and how to keep children safe from this.
www.internetmatters.org A great site for helping parents keep their children safe online.
What Parents Need to Know About Snapchat
Snapchat is a photo- and video-sharing app through which users can chat with friends via text or audio. Images and videos can be shared with specific friends, or as a ‘story’ (documenting the previous 24 hours) that’s visible to a person’s entire friend list. Snapchat usage rose during the lockdowns, with many young people utilising it to stay connected with their peers. The app continues to develop features to engage an even larger audience and emulate current trends, rivalling platforms such as TikTok and Instagram.
What Parents Need to Know About TikTok
TikTok is a video-sharing social media app that lets people create, view and download looping 15-second clips. Typically, these are videos of users lip-syncing and dancing to popular songs or soundbites (often for comic purposes), enhanced with filters, effects and text. Designed with young people in mind, TikTok skyrocketed in popularity in 2019 and has featured near the top of download charts ever since. It now has around 1 billion active users worldwide.
What Parents Need to Know About Hoop
Hoop is a social networking app that syncs with Snapchat to help users build their community of friends. It works along similar principles to Tinder: swiping left or right will reject or accept potential contacts, making new connections in the process. When two users accept each other, they can then communicate via Snapchat. There is no chat function on Hoop itself: video and audio calls, messaging and image sharing all take place through Snapchat. When a user adds a new Hoop contact, they are essentially sharing their personal information from Snapchat.
What Parents Need to Know About Social Media Scams
Published 15th September 2021 A free online safety guide on social media scams.
On any social media platform, you’ll often come across links to genuine-looking websites. They might include an exclusive offer for one of your favourite shops or invite you to complete a quiz in return for a particular reward. In some cases, clicking on these links takes you to a fake website where you are asked to provide your personal details. The whole enterprise is a ploy to capture sensitive details, such as your email address and password, which the scammers then exploit at your expense.
Published 29th Sept 2021- A free online safety guide on Pokémon GO.
Pokémon GO has been among the world’s most popular mobile games since its spectacular release in 2016. It's recently enjoyed a resurgence, thanks partly to people combining entertainment and exercise during lockdown. In Pokémon GO – like the Pokémon TV show, trading card series and other video games – players capture, train and battle with their Pokémon creatures: physically exploring locations while using augmented reality via their phone’s screen. The game generally provides a positive experience, but there are still some safety concerns to consider.
Published 6th October 2021 - A free online safety guide on Tinder.
Tinder is a free online mobile dating app used by more than 50 million people worldwide. Users sign up using their Facebook account and are matched with other people based on various preferences, such as location, age and shared interests. The user can swipe right to show interest in a profile (and connect as a match) or swipe left to ignore (decline) the match. If two users both like each other’s profile and become a match, they are then able to communicate with each other directly.
Most students can now access the Internet and send photos/video feed via their smartphones, gaming consoles, tablets, etc. Many students will also have their own social networking sites, such as Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, etc.
The best approach is to talk to your children about responsible online behaviour and the possible consequences of actions and bad decisions.
You can search for information to help children stay safe here: https://parentinfo.org
TikTok app - see below to find out about why police are concerned about how young people using the TikTok app and advice for parents/carers
See the latest information from National Online Safety group about Fortnite 2 and other technology concerns as part of their #WakeUpWednesday campaign: https://nationalonlinesafety.com/resources/wake-up-wednesday/
** SnapChat Maps is a new update from SnapChat that could allow children to inadvertently reveal their location and pose a danger. Click below to find out more and how to protect your child.
** See below for guides to safely using Snapchat and Instragram.
Rocket League is what’s known as a free-to-play title. That is, theoretically, users can download and play the game without ever thinking about it costing any money. However, like many free-to-play offerings, Rocket League contains in-game purchases which can accelerate a player’s progress – a particular temptation for eager young gamers.
Our #WakeUpWednesday guide explains that – although Rocket League’s relative mildness is reflected by its PEGI 3 certificate – in-game purchases are not the only potential risk. Parents and carers also need to be mindful of their children spending extra hours online honing their skills, plus a competitive community of other players who may occasionally turn aggressive.
A new school year always holds its share of potentially harmful online crazes, games and apps. Some may be unexpected, and some may be more commonplace like TikTok, Call of Duty or Instagram, each presenting similar hazards to a different audience as each year group becomes old enough to be fascinated by them.
What we can confidently predict, however, is that National Online Safety will continue to bring you the latest insights and analysis of the games, apps and devices that have got children talking.
For the start of term, this week’s #WakeUpWednesday guide summarises some excellent all-purpose tips to keep young people safe online throughout the 2021/22 academic year.
Downloading a new app or game is so quick and straightforward that, whenever a young person uses a smartphone (either their own or a parent’s) there’s always the possibility that they could expose themselves to inappropriate content (such as games with violent scenes or apps with adult themes) simply by sheer accident or, more likely, through youthful curiosity.
Fortunately, the parental controls you’ll find on most smartphones are an excellent way of minimising this possibility. They don’t completely remove the element of risk – but they do limit it considerably. Our #WakeUpWednesday guides this week steer you through the process of setting up this useful protection on iPhone and Android smartphones.
Know how to stay safe online – advice and tools for parents and young people
Child Sexual Exploitation is when someone makes you, or manipulates you, into doing something sexual for the benefit or enjoyment of themselves or others. It might be someone that you think is your boyfriend or girlfriend or someone you’ve just met or known for a while.
It can happen online or offline.
Offenders will attempt to draw you into a relationship and gain your trust by giving you gifts or attention. You might think this is harmless, but then they will make you feel that you have to give something back in return and this might involve sexual acts.
That’s abuse - it’s never OK but it’s never your fault.
NSPCC - Staying safe online