Online safety is very important to us at The Oval School and it is therefore vital for us that you are not only alert, to the behaviours being displayed by some children in school but also to the dangers of online usage and the influence that these games/videos/apps have on a child’s reality.
Online safety is very important to us!
The definition of abuse is as follows:
“Abuse: a form of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting by those known to them or, more rarely, by others. Abuse can take place wholly online, or technology may be used to facilitate offline abuse. Children may be abused by an adult or adults or by another child or children”
Keeping Children Safe in Education
What does Online Abuse look like?
- Name-calling between peers (bullying)
- Sexual exploitation and abuse (sexualised language, images, videos)
- Inappropriate language (swearing, making threats)
- Adults or other children directing children to steal, exploit or bully others
- Adults posing as children with sinister intent to abuse or exploit
How can online usage Impact on Children’s Behaviour?
- Affect child’s sleep
- Interfere with routines i.e. mealtimes/bedtime
- Alter child’s mood – can provoke anger, violence, frustration
- Child can become withdrawn
- Child could have an increased confidence
- Child may start to talk about new ‘friends’
- Child may get upset at the prospect of giving up the game, video or app
- Child’s behaviour at school may decline
- Child’s academic progress may be limited
With this in mind, Online Safety is an aspect of safeguarding that The Oval School takes very seriously. We therefore actively promote and reinforce the age limits of games, videos and apps all with the pupil’s safety and wellbeing in mind. We would therefore appreciate parental support in enforcing this at home.
All of the apps and games that children are playing do have a recommended age range.
- Tik Tok – 13 years
- Snapchat – 13 years
- Facebook – 13 years
- Instagram – 13 years
- Whatsapp – 16 (previously 13 years)
- Fortnite – PEGI 12 Years
- Grand Theft Auto – M for ‘Mature Players’ rated 18+
- Youtube – 13 years
Recommendations for assisting in keeping your child safe online
- Reduce screen time
- Speak to your children about what they are doing and who they are talking to online
- Create and implement rules and boundaries relating to online gaming/videos
- Be aware of who your children are engaging with online
- Be aware of the tone of conversations that are being had
- Monitor games and websites prior to allowing your child free access
- Adhere to the age constraints outlined on apps, games and videos.
We hope that these recommendations assist in supporting you to support your child’s wellbeing whilst online. Meanwhile, we will continue to implement our behaviour and safeguarding policies, respectively, within the school and any instances of inappropriate behaviour or safeguarding concerns that arise will be referred directly to the Headteacher.