In school the Hertfordshire Grid for Learning provides for a safe and secure online environment. Many parents and carers do seek advice on how they can help their children to ‘Stay Safe’ online outside of school. These websites provide comprehensive information about online safety and once parents and carers have a wider knowledge and understanding of the issues they can decide what is right for their family.
Useful web sites for parents
- www.childnet-int.org – A non-profit making organisation working directly with children, parents and teachers to ensure that the issues of online child protection and children’s safe and positive use of the internet are addressed. Childnet International produce an online CD guide specifically for parents KnowITAll – www.childnet-int.org/kia/
- www.thinkuknow.co.uk – The Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre www.ceop.police.uk/safety-
centre has set up its own educational website which has been designed and written specifically for children, young people, teachers, parents and carers.
- www.getsafeonline.org A beginners guide to using the Internet safety, including a quiz and some video tutorials about how to ‘stay safe’ on-line.
- www.kidsmart.org.uk – Kidsmart is an award winning internet safety website for parents and those working with children. It has been developed by the children’s internet charity Childnet International and has excellent information on many of the technologies used by children, with guidance on how to ‘stay safe’ online.
- http://consumers.ofcom.org.uk/2011/10/advice-for-parents/ – Managing your Media – Good Ofcom online safety video and guide for parents/carers
- www.bullying.co.uk – One in five young people have experienced bullying by text message or via email. This website gives advice for children and parents on bullying.
- www.parents.vodafone.com – Vodafone have developed this website in conjunction with mumsnet. It is very accessible and provides information and guidance to parents with understanding their child’s digital world and get more involved. There is even an on-line test to see how much you know!
- www.internetmatters.org – Lots of guidance and articles for parents about keeping their children safe online
Many children have a Facebook account even though the terms and conditions state the minimum age is 13 years. To help raise awareness with parents/carers of the safeguarding implications and provide practical advice the HSCB eSafety group have developed a parent handout.
The following page also includes guidance on Facebook privacy settings.
Instagram is a social networking service based on the sharing of photographs or short videos, usually from mobile devices. It has become very popular with young people, who like to ‘follow’ each other, build up numbers of ‘followers’ and use the service for text chatting and messaging, as well as sharing pictures and videos.
By default, photographs and videos published by a user are public, and anyone can see them and follow the user. The user must actively choose to make their posts private in order to protect them. If selected, images and videos can also be added to a ‘photo map’ which shows where each picture was taken, therefore potentially giving away the location of the user. A user’s profile picture and ‘bio’ is public, even if they choose to make their posts private.
Herts for Learning have created a short guidance sheet on Instagram, aimed at parents, carers and young people.
- Instagram Guidance (409KB)
Free ISP parental controls
Childnet International has been working with BT, Sky, Talk Talk and Virgin Media to produce a new resource for parents and carers and those working with them: Video guides for the free ISP parental controls. The videos are available on the Safer Internet Centre website and the films can be embedded or downloaded.