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Internet Safety

Buying a PC, laptop or tablet for your children?
Computers open a world of opportunity and learning for children and young people, especially when connecting to the internet.

The internet provides a digital world offering an opportunity for learning, exploration, entertainment and communication. It’s become an integral learning tool embraced by children and young people and leads to considerable enrichment. However, as with most things we do, the internet also has associated risks. There are potential threats such as bullying or unwanted contact, many of which are regularly reported in the media. These reasons, however, should not stop you from making these purchases, but it is becoming increasingly important to understand the risks and how to minimise them.

The Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre is the UK law enforcement agency dedicated to help protect children when online. Their site offers information to inform parents about online risks as well as information aimed at children to help them understand the risks.

QEGS approach to the use of the Internet at School
The Internet is an amazing resource for education but it is fraught with many hazards and as a result we have produced the following guidelines/rules for our students. Unfortunately there is some material on the Internet which would be offensive to most people, such as pornography, racist and fascist material. Our Internet provider (LGfL) 'filters' known offensive locations of material of this kind, but there is too much of it for this filtering to be completely effective. The only way to completely block access to this kind of material would be to have a restricted range of pages available, which would mean many of the advantages of the Internet would be lost.

Our alternative system is to educate pupils and enforce an acceptable use policy in dealing with the less savoury side of Internet use. The following guidelines explain this:

Pupil guidelines for Internet use

  • Never give out personal details about yourself or anyone else.
  • Remember that access is a privilege, not a right and that access requires responsibility.
  • You are responsible for your good behaviour on the Internet and communications over the network just as you are for your behaviour in a classroom or a school corridor.
  • The Internet is provided for you to conduct research and communicate with others not for your entertainment; although this may also be possible it is not a right.
  • Your computer storage areas, emails and floppy disks will be treated like school lockers. Staff may review files and communications to insure that users are using the system responsibly. You should not expect that files stored on servers or disks will always be private.
  • If you or your friends do accidentally come across an offensive site please report it to a teacher immediately.

The following are not permitted:

  • Sending or displaying offensive messages or pictures
  • Using obscene language
  • Harassing, bullying, insulting or attacking other users
  • Accessing the Internet during lessons without the teacher’s permission.
  • Damaging computers, computer systems or computer networks
  • Violating copyright laws
  • Using others people’s passwords
  • Trespassing in others people’s folders, work or files
  • Intentionally wasting limited resources

Breaking these rules will mean your Internet access is removed for a period of time or even permanently.

  • Other punishments may also be used as for all use of inappropriate language or behaviour in school.
  • In serious cases the police or local authorities may be involved.

Websites and Documents about the safe use of the Internet

Childnet Working to help keep the internet safe
Advice sheet to parents This was produced by Barnet Secondary Schools with the Police
Internet Dangers A powerpoint presentation produced by the Police
Although dated contains useful information
Thinkuknow resources Parental guide to e-safety