We take e-safety very seriously at Meldreth Primary School, ensuring your children are safe when they are working on online.
Our e-safety policy reflects the importance we place on safe use of information systems and electronic communication. We aim to keep children safe online and also when using mobile phones, games consoles and wireless technology. It is most important to educate children on the benefits, risks and responsibilities of using information technology, and we seek to help parents play their full part in ensuring their children are aware and safe in and out of school.
All of our pupils and staff have signed e-behaviour agreements and training is provided annually for both staff and pupils.
Mr Jones is our e-safety co-ordinator and is happy to help with any problems or questions you may have your children’s online safety.
A copy of our e-safety policy has been agreed by governors can be found below. This policy has much in common with our behaviour, child protection and anti bullying policies and is built into our Computing curriculum.
All classes use STARZ+, a completely safe online learning platform, through which we teach all aspects of keeping safe online through the e-safety teaching programme ACE (Accredited Competence in e-safety). ACE teaches children the importance of protecting and keeping their identity secure; how to be safe when connecting with others online and how to exchange and share information safely.
How can I be sure my child is safe online?
- Make sure you have installed parental controls on your home broadband and any internet-enabled devices.
- Set up a user account for your child on the family computer and make sure other accounts in the household are password-protected so that younger children can’t access them by accident.
How can I ensure that my child avoids unsuitable material when searching for information?
- Try to use safe search engines such as Swiggle, Kidrex or Kids-search.
- Safe search settings can also be activated on Google (and other search engines including YouTube).
- The age ratings that come with games, apps, films and social networks are a good guide to whether they’re suitable for your child. For example, the minimum age limit is 13 for several social networking sites, including Facebook and Instagram.
- Be aware that sites aimed at under-10s like Moshi Monsters and Club Penguin also have social networking elements so you should closely monitor your child’s use of these too.
How can I maintain control of my child’s use of devices and the internet?
- Agree and set boundaries with them or have a family contract for their internet use.
- Be clear what your child can and can’t do online – where they can use the internet, how much time they can spend online, the sites they can visit and the type of information they can share.
- Agree with your child when they can have a mobile phone or tablet.
- Put your family computer in a communal area like the lounge or kitchen so you can keep an eye on how they are using the internet and also share in their enjoyment.
Where can I find out more information?
- The Thinkuknow http://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/ website is a great first stop for children and parents for information and videos on e-safety
- Visit the parents’ pages at Cambridgeshire’s ICT Service website: www.ccc-esafety.org.uk for lots of useful help and advice for parents about keeping your child safe online.
Here is what our children say about Starz+.
“When you go on Starz you can talk to all your friends and teachers. It is much safer than going on other websites because everyone who is on it - you know. If you want to talk to people in a group or someone is unkind to you can press the red whistle. That means the company will instantly give your message to your teacher and they will sort things out. On Starz Plus you can also make a blog about something you like and people can see it that you trust. You can message things to one particular person or lots of people to your choice. So if you urgently want to send someone a message about something you can! On Starz Plus you can also play lots of fun games with friends, but the most important thing is that you are safer than you are with other websites online.”
Cuan Year 5
"I like going on STARZ because you can send special messages to your best friend and you can play games. I like it because you can change your background to really cool stuff like an Arsenal one or a Liverpool one." Leo Year 2
We use the following e-safety videos in school with your child.
Hector’s World: For younger children. Watch Hector and his friends learning to use the computer safely:
Lee and Kim: For 5-8 year olds. Explore safe use of computers with Lee and Kim:
Thinkuknow Cyber Café: Have fun keeping safe in the cool cyber café with Jason, Sunil and Ali
How can I protect my child from online bullying?
- Know your child. This is very important. Kids who are already suffering from low self-esteem or depression are prime targets for cyberbullying. It can be tempting to assume that your child is just going through a phase or that they’re just in a “bad mood,” but you are better off seeking professional help if there is a problem than simply waiting things out.
- Know the danger signs. Your child may become more withdrawn or moody. They may spend more time online, or may refuse to use the computer altogether. They may cut off ties with friends. If your child gives any indication that they are being bullied on or offline, take it seriously.
- Teach your child what to do in cases where they feel threatened or bullied. They should ignore the offender and contact an adult immediately. They should never engage with the person who is threatening them as that is only encouragement for the behaviors to continue. As an adult, if you feel threatened by someone online, contact the police just to be safe. You can also use built-in measures on certain websites, such as ignoring or reporting someone else.