Safe Internet Use

Safe Internet Use

INTERNET ACCESS POLICY

Middleton Parish Church School aims to fulfil everyone's potential in a friendly, caring Christian environment where all are valued.

Rationale

Providing access to the Internet in school will raise educational standards and support the professional work of staff.

Purpose

To outline e-mail facilities and access to the Internet and explain how school is seeking to avoid the potential problems that unrestricted internet access could give rise to.

Guidelines

  • Teachers and pupils should have access to web sites world-wide (including museums and art galleries) offering educational resources, news and current events.
  • Staff will have the opportunity to access educational materials and good curriculum practice, to communicate with the advisory and support services, professional associations and colleagues; exchange curriculum and administration data with the LEA and DfES.
  • The Governors and Management Team should look to using the Internet to enhance the school’s management information and business administration systems.
  • Staff, including supply staff, will not be expected to take charge of an Internet activity without training. Staff should be given opportunities to discuss the issues and develop good teaching strategies. All staff (including teachers, supply staff and classroom assistants) and any other adults involved in supervising children accessing the internet, will be provided with the School Internet Access Policy, and will have its importance explained to them.
  • Parents' attention will be drawn to the Policy by letter in the first instance upon admission to the school and, thereafter, in our school prospectus. Our school Internet Access Policy will be available for parents and others to read on demand.
  • Staff must ensure that Internet access is appropriate and safe. The school will take every practical measure to ensure that children do not encounter upsetting, offensive or otherwise inappropriate material on the Internet. The following key measures will be adopted to help ensure that our pupils are not exposed to unsuitable material:

    Our internet access is purchased through Rochdale LEA which provides a service designed for pupils including a "firewall" filtering system intended to prevent access to material inappropriate for children;
    children using the internet will normally be working in the classroom, during lesson time and will be supervised by an adult (usually the class teacher) at all times.

    Staff will check that the sites pre-selected for pupil use are appropriate to the age and maturity of pupils.

    Staff will be particularly vigilant when pupils are undertaking their own search and will check that the children are following the agreed search plan

    Pupils will be taught to use e-mail and the internet responsibly in order to reduce the risk to themselves and others.

    Rules for Responsible Internet Use will be posted near computer systems. (See Appendix.)

    The Computing Co-ordinator will monitor the effectiveness of internet access strategies.

    The Computing Co-ordinator will ensure that occasional checks are made on files to monitor compliance with the school's Internet Access Policy;

    The Head teacher will ensure that the policy is implemented effectively;

    Methods to quantify and minimise the risk of pupils being exposed to inappropriate material will be reviewed in consultation with colleagues from other schools and advice from the LEA, our Internet Service Provider and the DfES.

    If there is an incident in which a pupil is exposed to offensive or upsetting material the school will wish to respond to the situation quickly and on a number of levels. Responsibility for handing incidents involving children will be taken by the Computing Co-ordinator and the Child Protection Officer in consultation with the Head Teacher and the pupil's class teacher. All the teaching staff will be made aware of the incident at a Staff Meeting if appropriate.

  • If one or more pupils discover (view) inappropriate material our first priority will be to give them appropriate support. The pupil's parents/carers will be informed and given an explanation of the course of action the school has taken. The school aims to work with parents/carers and pupils to resolve any issue;
  • If staff or pupils discover unsuitable sites the Computing co-ordinator will be informed. The Computing Leader will report the URL (address) and content to the Internet Service Provider and the LEA; if it is thought that the material is illegal, after consultation with the ISP and LEA, the site will be referred to the Internet Watch Foundation and the police.
  • If pupils abuse the privileges of access to the internet or use of e-mail facilities by failing to follow the rules they have been taught or failing to follow the agreed search plan when given the privilege of undertaking their own internet search, then sanctions consistent with our School Behaviour Policy will be applied. This may involve informing the parents/carers. Teachers may also consider whether access to the internet may be denied for a period.
  • The Computing Leader will up-date virus protection regularly, will keep up-to-date with Computing news developments and work with the LEA and Internet Service Provider to ensure system security strategies to protect the integrity of the network are reviewed regularly and improved as and when necessary.
  • Pupils will learn how to use a web browser. Older pupils will be taught to use suitable web search engines. Staff and pupils will begin to use the Internet to find and evaluate information. Access to the Internet will become a planned part of the curriculum that will enrich and extend learning activities and will be integrated into the class schemes of work.
  • Pupils will learn how to use an e-mail application and be taught e-mail conventions. Staff and pupils will begin to use e-mail to communicate with others, to request information and to share information.
  • It is important that communications with persons and organisations are properly managed to ensure appropriate educational use and that the good name of the school is maintained. Therefore:

    Pupils will only be allowed to use e-mail once they have been taught the Rules of Responsible Internet Use and the reasons for these rules. 
    teachers will endeavour to ensure that these rules remain uppermost in the children's minds as they monitor children using e-mail;
    pupils may send e-mail as part of planned lessons but will not be given individual e-mail accounts at present;  
    in-coming e-mail to pupils will not be regarded as private;
    children will have the e-mail messages they compose checked by a member of staff before sending them;
    the forwarding of chain letters will not be permitted;
    pupils will not be permitted to use e-mail at school to arrange to meet someone outside school hours.

  • The school web site will:

    Provide accurate, up-to-date information about our school;
    Enable pupils to publish work to a high standard, for a very wide audience including pupils, parents, staff, governors, members of the local community and others;
    Celebrate good work;
    Provide pupils with the opportunity to publish their work on the internet;
    Promote the school.
    In the future it may be used to publish resources for projects or homework.

  • For reasons of Internet safety personal information on the web site will be restricted such that:

    The point of contact on the web site will be the school address, telephone number and e-mail address.
    Pupils’ full names or photographs that identify individuals on our web pages will not be published without explicit permission from a legal guardian.
    Home information or individual e-mail identities will not be published.
    Staff will be identified by their title and surname unless they request otherwise.
    Permission will be sought from other individuals before they are referred to by name on any pages we publish on our web site.

    Conclusion

    Effective use of Internet resources and e-mail by staff and pupils will raise standards and promote independent learning through technology.

  • It is important that this policy is read in conjunction with the school’s safeguarding policy and child protection policy.

    J Jastrzebski

    Policy updated: December 2016

    Children's Rules for Using the Internet at School

    You can view a copy below and, if you wish, print it out for use at home

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