Online Safety advice for parents during school closures
23rd March 2020
School closures bring lots of challenges for both school staff and parents, and both are increasingly looking to the benefits of technology to continue delivering some form of learning experience for children.
As always, there are huge benefits to be gained from the appropriate use of technology, and accessing learning resources whilst at home is a great example of this. However, parents (and teachers) need to be aware of the potential risks that go along with this.
The key messages around these risks are no different from those which your school no doubt shares already, however these messages need reinforcing as more pupils accessing learning content online (often prompted to do so by their teachers) and young people want to use social media to keep in touch with their friends.
Think U Know have released some useful summary guide sheets for parents or both primary and secondary aged children which you can access by clicking here as well as fortnightly online safety Home Activity Packs full of simple, 15 minute activities to support children’s online safety at home.
In addition, it's important to remind parents of:
- How to enable parental settings on devices at home: https://www.internetmatters.org/parental-controls/
- the age restrictions on social media apps and platforms; https://www.internetmatters.org/resources/what-age-can-my-child-start-social-networking/
- the potential risks (and age restrictions) of live streaming apps; https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/online-safety/livestreaming-online-video-apps/
- the importance of not believing everything you see online, especially in the current climate https://www.internetmatters.org/resources/tackling-fake-news-misinformation-advice-for-parents
- the importance of supervising children's use of technology (including when engaged in distance learning)
There are also plenty of reputable sites for parents to use to seek further help, including: