E-safety Briefing for Parents

This e-safety briefing aims to help you keep your children safe during the holidays

  1. What devices are your children using? Are there parental settings on those devices that can restrict some of the adult content? For example, PlayStation and Xbox consoles allow parents to restrict the games that children can download or play, based on their age. These age restrictions are known as PEGI ratings.

 

  1. Does your internet service provider give you access to parental filter controls? Most internet providers do. These allow you to choose which categories of websites your children are accessing. The ‘Big 4’ providers (BT, Sky, TalkTalk and Virgin Media) give parents access to filters at the broadband router. This means that you can go online to your broadband account, activate the software, and change the settings to levels appropriate for your children. By doing this you are restricting access to certain categories of website for any device that uses your home broadband.

 

  1. Talk to your children about their internet use. The holidays are a perfect time to talk to your children about what they do on the internet and this may give you some reassurance. There is a lot of scaremongering in the media about all the risks to children but much of it is poor, lazy reporting. Different children will have different amounts of knowledge, risk-taking and resilience. Talk with them about what they like to do online, where they go and who they talk to. This is the same conversation that we would have with our children in their ‘real world’ activities.

Two of the most important things to remember

Think about real life behaviour

Put things into a real life context. For example, would you let your children be in a crowd of unknown adults who may be swearing, using sexual innuendos or other things inappropriate for children to see and hear?

 

  • Consider the online games they are playing and what age the other players may be.
  • Do you know the age-rating of those games? Are your children playing 18-rated games such as Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty?
  • To find out what a game is like before you buy it for your child, go onto YouTube and do a search. It is likely there will be videos of people playing the game.
  • What social networking apps are they using? What are they sharing and who with?
  • Would you be happy with all of this in the real world?

Be approachable, ready to listen and talk

Children need to know they can come to you if something is wrong or if something upsets them. Reinforce this message; let them know you are there for them. Even if you don’t know what to do yourself you will know somebody who can help or there are plenty of resources online that can help you. Kids will be kids; risk-taking is a part of growing up. Again, think about the real world: as a parent you will have that instinct if something is wrong online, exactly as you would in the real world. For example, a change of behaviour or attitude can be a sign that something is not right. When we notice a change in our children we talk to them to try and get to the bottom of things.

Handy websites for parents

YouTube www.youtube.com

This is a fantastic resource to find out so much. If you want to know the answer to something, there’s a pretty good chance someone has made a video to help you along. For example, do you need to know how to use the PEGI ratings and privacy settings on a PlayStation or Xbox? Want to know how to set the internet filter on an iPhone? How about those privacy and security settings on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and all the other apps out there? Or even if you want to have a glimpse at some of the games children are playing. Found out about parent resources and safety on YouTube at: https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/2802272

Common Sense Media

www.commonsensemedia.org

There is a lot of information on the Common Sense Media website that parents will find really handy. Games, apps, videos along with age ratings, suitability, and things that parents need to know.

Think U know

www.thinkuknow.co.uk

The Think U Know website has some great resources such as information videos for parents and for children. Many children will already know about this site, there’s a good chance they will have watched a few of the videos at school, so it would be good for parents to be aware of these too.

For any safeguarding concerns at St Mary’s, please contact the following staff:

Mr J Wilson (Yr 12 & 13)

Mrs R Austin ( Yr 10 & 11 )

Mr S Murphy (Yr 7, 8 & 9)

At St Mary’s we take the issue of eSafety very seriously. Here are some links and resources you will find helpful in making sure children are protected when using the internet.

The internet, used responsibly, is a wonderful way to discover, create and connect with people.

It is, increasingly, an essential tool for young people researching issues and homework topics for themselves.

St Mary’s is extremely concerned about e-safety and the prevention of cyber bullying, whether via email, text messaging or any social digital media.

WE WANT TO HELP YOU KEEP YOUR CHILD SAFE.

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Parental Controls

Most Internet Service Providers have some form of parental controls available, below are some videos on how to set these up for BT, Sky and Virgin Media.

In addition to parental controls offered by your internet service provider (ISP), some devices, such as games consoles, tablets and smart phones have additional settings.

Please read the Parents’ Guide to Technology produced by the Safer Internet Centre for more information:

Useful Websites

you can find e-safety tips, advice and resources to help children and young people stay safe on the internet

Find out what’s good and what’s not so good on the internet and what you can do about it:

An interactive internet safety resource. Contains the latest advice on cyber bullying and reporting.

Great for children, teachers, parents and carers. Fun games and activities alongside internet safety advice.

Advice for teenagers on how to stay safe while chatting online with information about the potential dangers of interactive services like chat, Instant Messenger, online games, email and mobiles.

*We are not responsible for content of other websites but at the time of adding their content was relevant to this section.

Mobile Phones

For all you need to know about ringtones, entering competitions and television voting, consult PhoneBrain.

This is a premium rate services regulator providing advice for users on phone-paid services. Phone-paid services add the cost of a service or goods to your phone bill or pre-pay account – this could include ringtones and wallpapers for your phone, TV voting or charity donations.

Access the user manuals for all Blackberry Smartphones, giving parents the opportunity to find out how Blackberry Messenger (BBM) works.

*We are not responsible for content of other websites but at the time of adding their content was relevant to this section.

Social Networks and Blogs

This helps parents understand the positive and creative ways people are using social networking spaces like MySpace, Facebook and Bebo and highlights the potential risks of using these sites and the ways to minimise these risks.

This site gives information about social networking sites and how to use them responsibly, plus advice on preventing and responding to cyberbullying.

Essential information developed with the music industry.

This is a list of legal sites to download music.

Take the quiz and test your knowledge about the law online:

Find out what all the new terms mean…

*We are not responsible for content of other websites but at the time of adding their content was relevant to this section.

If you are still worried

PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE TO CONTACT US ABOUT ANY ESAFETY ISSUES THAT ARE NOT ANSWERED HERE.

If there is anything you would like to tell us, or if you know of any more resources we can add, please get in touch via the Contact Us page.

If you have any other problems or worries about eSafety, please do not hesitate to seek advice from our college technicians by ringing 0151 639 7531 or contact us at website@stmaryswallasey.com

Report an issue to CEOP

The Child Exploitation & Online Protection Centre

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