Online Safety Briefing: Term 4 2017-18 #esafety #onlinesafety

This is the 4th edition (Feb-March) of the Kent Education Safeguarding Team’s Online Safety briefings 2017-18. The aim of these posts is to help Designated Safeguarding Leads (DSLs) in educational settings keep up to date with of some of the emerging online safety issues and research which may be of interest.

The following links are not endorsed, controlled or promoted by Kent County Council. This briefing should not be shared or forwarded directly to children, young people or parents/carers due to the sensitive and potentially distressing nature of some content.

Before sharing content that names specific apps or websites, we recommend DSLs access the following links:

Articles and Research



Gaming and Gambling

Information Governance, Privacy and Data

Peer on Peer Abuse 

Professional Conduct

Self Esteem and Mental Health 

Sexual Abuse and Grooming

Sex and Relationships Education

Be aware that filters may block access to this content due to language and terms used

Social Media and Technology

Trust, Radicalisation and Extremism

Educational Content

Teaching Materials, Tools and Videos

Articles for Parent/Carers

Resources for parents/carers

Posted in 2018, Briefing, Colleges, Colleges and sixth forms, Early Years, Education Leaders and Managers, Independent Schools, Online Safety, Parents, Primary, Research, Resources, Safeguarding, Schools, Secondary | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Being Smart with Your Smartphone – New resource for KS2 from Childnet and PSA

Childnet International and the Phone-paid Services Authority (PSA) have worked together to create a lesson called Being Smart with Your Smartphone, this resource is designed for teachers to use with 8-11 year olds. The lesson highlights that it is possible to spend real money through your smartphone and gives key strategies to avoid any mishaps.

The resources are split into 3 parts;

  • The Teacher Pack contain detailed lesson plan and extension activities. The lesson looks at the different ways that young people can spend money through their phones (such as in-app purchases or voting on a TV talent show) and gives them practical strategies to help them recognise them and know what to do.
  • The PowerPoint presentation  features examples to highlight in-app purchases and explore tricky terms and conditions.
  • The Student Pack includes worksheets and additional information for pupils.

Further information about the resources is available on the Childnet blog here and the resources can be downloaded here.

For further help and information on this topic:



Posted in 2018, Advertising, Age limits, Apps, Childnet, Mobile Phones, Phone Paid Services Authority (PSA), Primary, Privacy, Resources | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Google and Parent Zone launch new KS2 resources: Be Internet Legends

Google and Parent Zone have collaborated on a new internet safety resource for use with Key Stage 2 pupils in UK primary schools. TheBe Internet Legends‘ curriculum is a PSHE Association accredited scheme of work and is free for KS2 teachers to order.

Containing lesson plans, support materials, worksheets, poster and stickers, curriculum packs will be delivered to schools to encourage discussion and exploration of issues such as appropriate behaviour, critical thinking and risk-spotting. The aim of the resources are to make young people safer and more confident explorers of the online world, and to help educators get across important messages with age-appropriate activities, tips and discussion points. Be Internet Legends assemblies will also be visiting schools in 2018.

Teachers can find out more about the content, assemblies and order the resources at:

Posted in 2018, Curriculum, Google, Independent Schools, Online Safety, Primary, Resources, Schools, The Parent Zone | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

BBC launch new resources to challenge young people to spot “fake news”

The BBC have publish a collection of free online resources as part of BBC School Report’s annual News Day.

The resources are suitable for children and young people aged 11-18 and include online videos and lessons plans and an interactive ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ style game “BBC iReporter” produced with Academy Award-winning animation studios Aardman Animation. The game, which can be played on mobile, tablet and desktop, aims to help young people learn to a range of journalism skills and experience for themselves some of the decisions journalists face – like checking facts and sources, selecting social media reaction and identify fake, false and inaccurate information. It gives the player first-hand experience of working in a newsroom facing the fast-paced pressures behind creating a captivating story, whilst maintaining impeccable accuracy, impact and speed and navigating the various pitfalls thrown up by potential fake news elements.

The game has been created with the help and input of BBC School Reporters who have helped shape the storyline and look and feel of the game throughout the design and build stages. You can play via

They have also published films and lesson plans to use in the classroom which help to explain what fake news is and why it is a problem, look at sources and the issues around trust and tips on how to spot fake, false and inaccurate information. These resources are available here.

If you have any feedback or wish to know more about the project please contact the BBC via

Other links:

Posted in 2018, BBC, Children and Young People, Critical Thinking, Curriculum, Fake News, Online Safety, Radicalisation and extremism, Reliability, Resources, Schools, Secondary | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Inquiry into the Impact of Cyberbullying on Social Media on Children and Young People’s Mental Health Published

Last year, Alex Chalk, MP for Cheltenham, in partnership with YoungMinds and The Children’s Society, set up an inquiry into the impact of cyberbullying on children and young people’s mental health.

A survey, published today was carried out by YoungMinds and The Children’s Society; the inquiry took oral and written evidence from young people – including an online survey of 1,089 young people aged 11-25 – social media companies, mental health experts and children’s charities in order to explore the impact of cyberbullying on children and young people’s mental health. Its panel included cross-party MPs and vlogger Grace Victory, who has spoken out about abuse she has received online.

  • 62% of respondents were under the age of 18;
  • Three-quarters of respondents were female (75%);
  • Almost half of respondents (45%) said that they had experienced a mental health problem in the past.

One 15-year-old girl said:

You kind of expect to experience it: nasty comments on the selfie, Facebook posts and Twitter posts, people screen grabbing your Snapchat story to laugh about it… I feel like it’s something people don’t take seriously. But leaving just one nasty comment could really hurt someone.

Social media companies should take complaints more seriously. If someone reports something, they shouldn’t take days to review it, they should literally just remove it straight away. The reaction from adults is just delete your account to stop the bullying, but that’s taking something away from that young person’s life for something that’s not their fault.

What the survey revealed

  • 61% of young people stated that they had their first accounts at age 12 or under, despite guidelines for social media sites stating that you must be 13 years old to have an account.
  • In total, 44% of the young people surveyed stated that they spend more than three hours per day on social media.
  • One in ten (9%) young people surveyed admitted logging on after midnight every night; one young person said it was “almost like a drug”. Young people giving evidence to the inquiry described feeling judged and inadequate if they didn’t have enough likes or followers.
  • 62% of respondents said that social media had a positive impact on their friendships.
    • However, 38% of young people reported that social media had a negative impact on how they feel about themselves, more than those who reported it having a positive impact (23%).

Experiences of cyberbullying

  • Almost half (47%) of young people surveyed had experienced threatening, intimidating or nasty messages via social media, email or text. 
  • In total, 39% of young people reported having personal experience of online bullying in their lifetime, in contrast to 49% who reported experience of off-line bullying.
  • 27% of young people reported personal experience of online bullying within the last year.
  • In total, 60% of young people reported having seen somebody be harassed or bullied online.
  • An overwhelming majority of young people surveyed (83%) said that social media companies should do more to tackle cyberbullying on social media, whilst only 6% of young people disagreed with this.

What should be done

The report  identified a number of issues that need to be addressed to ensure that social media companies play their part – together with Government, schools, families and industry – in creating a digital environment that limits the prevalence of cyberbullying and its negative impacts on children and young people.

The report has made a number of recommendations to social media companies, and to the Government to ensure that the online world is a safe and enjoyable place for children and young people.

Summary of recommendations

  1. The Government requires social media companies to ensure that their platforms are age-appropriate, and that children and young people understand how their data will be used;
  2. Social media companies enable children and young people to understand their rights and responsibilities including their behaviour towards others.
  3. Social media companies provide timely, effective and consistent responses to online bullying
  4. The Government improves accountability by requiring social media companies to publish data about their response to reports of online bullying
  5. Social media companies prioritise the promotion of children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing across their platforms
  6. The Government commissions additional research into the scale of online bullying, and its impact on children and young people
  7. The Government puts children’s experiences at the heart of internet safety policy development
  8. The Government educates children and young people to be safe and responsible online, and to know how to respond positively to online harms such as cyberbullying.
Posted in 2018, Children and Young People, Cyberbullying, e-Safety, Mental Health, Online Safety, Online Stress (FOMO), Research, Secondary, Social Media, Social Networking, Survey | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Childnet call on young people to ‘Connect with respect’ and enter their Film Competition

Childnet has launched their ninth Film Competition to encourage young people aged 7-18 to create a short film to educate their peers about staying safe online.

With the aim of encouraging young people to have respectful interactions online, the competition gives young people the opportunity to harness their creativity and share their understanding of online safety issues.

Judged by a panel of experts from the BBC, BAFTA, BBFC and BFI, the winning films will be shown at the finalists’ event in London and will be used as educational resources in schools across the UK.

This year’s theme focuses on how young people can ‘connect with respect’ and work together to make the better place for children and young people.

Important dates:

  • Competition opens: Wednesday 21st February
  • Competition closes: Monday 11th June
  • Finalists notified: Monday 18th June
  • Screening and finalist’s event at the BFI: Tuesday 3rd July

Connect with respect – how to take part

The Film Competition is split into two age categories and schools or youth organisations must oversee and submit entries on behalf of all participants. For both categories, young people must create a film in response to the theme:  ‘Connect with respect – a better internet starts with us!’

For both age groups, Childnet are looking for creative, imaginative films which show how young people can make a positive difference online. Young people might express their ideas through comedy, animation, or music. They are encouraged to consider different filmmaking styles such as creating an advert, campaign or documentary.

Childnet have developed resource packs including storyboard templates, guides to filmmaking and other useful documents to help schools and youth organisations engage and support young people in making their films.

Closing date and how to enter

To enter the Childnet Film Competition please send an email to to request an information pack. If you would like any more information, or find out more and download the schools packs visit

Entries need to be sent to Childnet by 11th June, including entry and media consent forms which can be found at There is also important information about copyright that entrants will need to consider.

Finalists Screening Event and Prizes

The shortlisted films will be shown on the big screen in front of industry guests and young people at the Childnet Film Competition 2018 Event at the BFI London Southbank and will also receive a BBFC rating.

The Film Competition winners will each receive a filmmaking kit for their school which includes a Canon DSLR camera, tripod and clapperboard.

The winners will be decided by an expert panel which includes:

  • Catherine McAllister, Head of Safeguarding and Child Protection at BBC Children’s
  • David Austin OBE, Chief Executive of the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC)
  • Joanna van der Meer, Film Tutor and Family Learning Programmer at BFI Southbank
  • Lisa Prime, Children’s Events Programmer at the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA)
Posted in 2018, Childnet, Competition, Online Safety, Primary, Schools, Secondary, Young People | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Inquiry into the impact of social media and screen-use on young people’s health launched

The Commons Science and Technology Committee has announced an inquiry into the impact of social media and screen-use on young people’s health. The committee says it wants to hear the views of young people themselves, as well as of teachers and youth workers.

Chairman, Norman Lamb, said it was vital to assess the benefits and risks; “Social media and smartphones are increasingly being used by children and young people. We want to determine the scale of the issues – separating out the understandable concerns from the hard evidence, and to identify what practical measures people are already taking to boost the benefits and blunt the potential harms. We want to hear from schools and young people, as well as from the industry and government.

The committee is particularly keen to hear details of any initiatives undertaken, by children, schools and youth organisations, to help young people cope with the demands of the digital world.

Other issues the MPs would welcome thoughts on include:

  • the wellbeing benefits from social media usage, including any apps that provide mental-health benefits to users
  • the physical or mental harms from social media use and screen-use, including safety risks and the extent of any addictive behaviour
  • any measures being used, or needed, to mitigate any potential harmful effects of excessive screen-use
  • what monitoring, controls or regulation are needed and where responsibility and accountability should lie for such measures
  • areas that should be the focus of any further research

Schools, children and young people, professionals or other organisations who would like to submit written views to the inquiry should do so – in no more than 3,000 words – through the committee’s inquiry page by 6 April.

Schools and settings may find this to be a valuable opportunity to work together with children and young people, to explore their views and experiences in the online world and to formulate a response.

Posted in 2018, Colleges, Colleges and sixth forms, Consultation, Early Years, Education Leaders and Managers, Government, Independent Schools, Online Safety, Primary, Schools, Screen-time, Secondary, Social Media | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Online Safety Briefing: Term 3 2017-18 #esafety #onlinesafety

This is the 3rd edition (January-February) of the Kent Education Safeguarding Team’s Online Safety briefings 2017-18. The aim of these posts is to help Designated Safeguarding Leads (DSLs) in educational settings keep up to date with of some of the emerging online safety issues and research which may be of interest.

The following links are not endorsed, controlled or promoted by Kent County Council. This briefing should not be shared or forwarded directly to pupils or parents/carers due to the sensitive and potentially distressing nature of some content.

Before sharing content that names specific apps or websites, we recommend DSLs access the following links:

National Updates

Articles and Research


Gaming and Gambling

Peer on Peer Abuse 

Professional Conduct

Self Esteem and Mental Health 

Sexual Abuse and Grooming

Social Media and Technology

Educational Content

Teaching Materials, Tools and Videos

Resources for Parent/Carers


Additional content is also featured on the Safer Internet Day 2018 round-up available here.

Posted in 2018, Briefing, Colleges and sixth forms, e-Safety, Early Years, Education Leaders and Managers, Independent Schools, Online Safety, Parents, Primary, Research, Resources, Safeguarding, Schools, Secondary | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Safer Internet Day 2018 Round-up

On Tuesday 6th February 2018, the world celebrated Safer Internet Day 2018. Safer Internet Day (SID) is coordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre and this year’s theme was “Create, Connect and Share Respect: A better internet starts with you”.

To celebrate the day, many organisations and services produced new resources and content to help raise awareness and spread positive messages. This blog post aims to highlight resources and content made available on or for SID 2018; schools and settings may find these resources helpful in the curriculum planning or to share with  children and parents/carers.


UK Safer Internet Centre:


CBBC: Own it (KS2/3)

CBBC Grown Ups

Internet Matters:


Best of the rest!

Please leave links below to any resources from national organisations that we may have missed: the best suggested might be added to the post!

Note: some content will also be featured on the Jan/Feb Online Safety briefing .

Posted in 2018, Briefing, e-Safety, Resources, Safer Internet Day, Schools, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New research commissioned by the UK Safer Internet Centre published about ‘Digital Friendships’ #SID2018

New research into Digital Friendships  commissioned by the UK Safer Internet Centre, has been published to mark Safer Internet Day 2018. The research has revealed that young people are more likely to have a positive experience than a negative experience when online.

The study, which surveyed 2,000 8-17 year olds on their feelings and attitudes towards social media, revealed that despite the often-publicised negative effects of social media use, the internet plays a pivotal and positive role in how young people develop relationships and maintain their social lives in 2018.

  • Two in five 8-17-year-olds say they have felt worried or anxious on the internet in the last week, with one in ten (11%) reporting they have often felt this
  • 68% of young people said that chatting to their friends online cheers them up
  • When a friend was feeling sad or upset, 88% of young people said they sent them a kind message
  • Almost half (49%) of young people said that in the last year someone had been mean to them online, with 1 in 12 experiencing this all or most of the time
  • In comparison, more than four in five young people (83%) have experienced people being kind to them online in the last year

Reporting on young people’s online experiences, the research shows that respondents have felt inspired (74%), excited (82%) or happy (89%) as a result of their internet use in the past week. In contrast, a smaller proportion reported to have felt sad (56%) or angry (52%) by what they came across online in the last seven days.

When things do go wrong, young people feel confident to reach out to their networks for support and guidance, with 60% saying they talk to friends when someone upsets them online. Slightly higher, 62% turn to their parents and carers for guidance.

Young people also feel passionately about their online community with almost four in five (78%) of those surveyed claiming to believe that every person on the internet has a responsibility to be respectful to others. Demonstrating empathy and support online, 88% said that when a friend was feeling sad or upset they had sent a kind message. More than half (54%) said they’d feel isolated if they couldn’t talk to their friends via technology.

However, many young people also face bullying, exclusion and a range of pressures to maintain their friendships and popularity. Almost half (47%) of respondents said that people had excluded them online in the last year, with 60% thinking it is important for friends to include them in group chats. Almost three-quarters (73%), say it’s important for their friends to reply to their messages as soon as they’ve seen them. Still, many young people are rejecting these pressures with 35% saying that they do not feel they must use social media to be popular or liked.

With reforms to Relationships and Sex Education on the horizon, it’s positive to see the majority (72%) of young people wanted their school to teach them about cyberbullying and how to manage friendships online. However, one in ten of those surveyed say that they have not been taught this in school.

This research comes as Safer Internet Day 2018 was being celebrated globally on Tuesday 6th February 2018 with the slogan “Create, Connect and Share Respect: A better internet starts with you”.  The UK Safer Internet Centre – comprised of Childnet, Internet Watch Foundation and South West Grid for Learning – believe that the key to continuing the positive use of the internet is to empower young people with the skills they need to navigate the online world in a safe and respectful way, and to ensure schools, parents and carers and other members of the children’s workforce have the tools to support young people to do so.

Will Gardner, a Director of the UK Safer Internet Centre and CEO of Childnet, says:

It’s clear that technology is having an impact on how young people develop relationships, interact with each other and express themselves. Today’s findings are encouraging, highlighting that the majority of young people’s experiences of the internet are positive in this regard. However we also see that there is a negative side, including where young people face pressures in their online friendships.

Safer Internet Day gives us the unique opportunity to collectively promote respect and empathy online, inspire young people to harness their enthusiasm and creativity, and support them to build positive online experiences for everyone. It is inspirational to see so many different organisations and individuals come together today to build a better internet. We want to make sure that every young person feels equipped and empowered to make positive decisions when interacting online – be it on gaming sites, messaging apps or social sharing platforms.

Margot James, Minister for Digital and the Creative Industries says:

As today’s figures show, the Internet can and does have a positive effect on young people’s lives but we must all recognise the dangers that can be found online. Only by working together can government, industry, parents, schools and communities harness the power of the internet for good and reduce its risks. It is fantastic to see this ambition reflected on Safer Internet Day with hundreds of organisations coming together across the UK to raise awareness and empower young people.

Posted in 2018, Online Safety, Research, Safer Internet Day, Schools | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment