The Westgate School recognises the potential that online resources can bring to support pupils in their education and preparedness for life beyond school. We are committed to supporting young people to become discerning and safe users of online resources, including applications available through mobile devices as well as those on the internet and computers.
The online world knows no boundaries and extends beyond a child/young person’s (CYP) time in school. They are engaging with the online world at all times of the day and often, without supervision. Working in partnership with parents/carers, the School is committed to providing support and information such that parents/carers can provide the necessary protection for their child when engaging with online platforms.
Through Partners in Learning events and the regular sharing of information to parents/carers and pupils, the school will continue to support parents to educate and protect their children. As part of this commitment, our school has a specified teacher with responsibility for leading this aspect of our provision. This policy sits within the framework of the recent Keeping Children Safe in Education, Safeguarding and Child Protection policies.
The School has a colleague with responsibility as a Designated Teacher for Online Safety. We will work alongside Year Leaders to respond to individual incidents, maintain an up-to-date knowledge of key issues and lead appropriate professional development for colleagues; liaise with outside agencies; lead Partners in Learning events for parents/carers on a regular basis and, provide and deliver curriculum resources and lessons/assemblies to pupils
Educating pupils about online safety
Pupils will be taught about online safety as part of the curriculum (National Curriculum computing programmes of study and guidance on relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and health education).
In Key Stage 1, pupils will be taught to:
Use technology safely and respectfully,
keeping personal information private
Identify where to go for help and support when they have concerns about content or contact on the internet or other online technologies
Pupils in Key Stage 2 will be taught to:
Use technology safely, respectfully and responsibly
Recognise acceptable and unacceptable behaviour
Identify a range of ways to report concerns about content and contact
By the end of primary school, pupils will know:
That people sometimes behave differently online, including by pretending to be someone they are not
That the same principles apply to online relationships as to face-to-face relationships, including the importance of respect for others online including when we are anonymous
The rules and principles for keeping safe online, how to recognise risks, harmful content and contact, and how to report them
How to critically consider their online friendships and sources of information including awareness of the risks associated with people they have never met
How information and data is shared and used online
What sorts of boundaries are appropriate in friendships with peers and others (including in a digital context)
How to respond safely and appropriately to adults they may encounter (in all contexts, including online) whom they do not know
In Key Stage 3, pupils will be taught to:
Understand a range of ways to use technology safely, respectfully, responsibly and securely, including protecting their online identity and privacy
Recognise inappropriate content, contact and conduct, and know how to report concerns
Pupils in Key Stage 4 will be taught:
To understand how changes in technology affect safety, including new ways to protect their online privacy and identity
How to report a range of concerns
By the end of secondary school, pupils will know:
Their rights, responsibilities and opportunities online, including that the same expectations of behaviour apply in all contexts, including online
About online risks, including that any material someone provides to another has the potential to be shared online and the difficulty of removing potentially compromising material placed online
Not to provide material to others that they would not want shared further and not to share personal material which is sent to them
What to do and where to get support to report material or manage issues online
The impact of viewing harmful content
That specifically sexually explicit material (e.g. pornography) presents a distorted picture of sexual behaviours, can damage the way people see themselves in relation to others and negatively affect how they behave towards sexual partner
Educating parents about online safety
The school will raise parents’ awareness of internet safety in letters or other communications home, in information via our website, in pupils’ Handbooks and, through Partners in Learning events. This policy will also be shared with parents when their child joins our school.
If parents have any queries or concerns in relation to online safety, these should be raised in the first instance with their child’s class teacher or tutor. Low level or early concerns should be shared with the Assistant Year Leader. In a case where a child is at risk of harm or there are ongoing concerns, these must be raised with the School’s Designated Safeguarding Lead who will liaise with the Designated Teacher for Online Safety to take appropriate action.
Cyber-bullying takes place online, such as through social networking sites, messaging apps or gaming sites. Like other forms of bullying, it is the repetitive, intentional harming of one person or group by another person or group, where the relationship involves an imbalance of power (see also the School’s behaviour policy.) Cyberbullying can take place between any individuals, including between adults
Preventing and addressing cyber-bullying
In relation to a specific incident of cyber-bullying, the school will follow the processes set out in the School’s Behaviour Policy and other relevant policies. Where illegal, inappropriate or harmful material has been spread among pupils, the School will use all reasonable endeavours to ensure the incident is contained and expect parents to work in partnership in the event of such incidents.
Parents are expected to:
Support the school in upholding this policy and ensuring that their child is not engaged in harmful activity onlline
Ensure their child has read, understood and agreed to the terms on acceptable use of the IT and mobile devices
Ensure that they adhere to the School’s Social Media and Online Communications Policy
Ensure that they are aware of the Malicious Communications Act 1998 in their own use of online platforms and communication, including WhatsApp and email
Online Safety Policy