myguide: Building parents’ and carers’ confidence online

Children’s Minister Delyth Morgan yesterday launched a new facility on myguide, a free and easy-to-use tool to help parents and carers catch up with their children when it comes to the Internet.

“myguide” helps provide the next step in the Government’s implementation of Dr Tanya Byron’s review of internet safety. myguide can be used independently, with the support of a friend or family member, or with help from experts in one of the thousands of UK online centres based in libraries and community organisations.

The updates to myguide now includean interactive guidance course and quiz to help families manage the risks while enjoying the benefits of the web. It includes many of the top parental concerns about the internet, from phishing and spam to online rogue traders and extremist websites, from chat rooms to music file-sharing, and from stealth marketing to safety filters. The site stresses the importance of open family discussions and where to go for additional information and help.

Launching the new resource, Children’s Minister Delyth Morgan said: Today’s generation of children and young people are often much more computer savvy than their parents, something that can be of great concern as mums, dads and carers look to keep their children safe online without restricting their enthusiasm for and exploration of the Internet. The free myguide service is designed specifically for people in this situation. The new Family Internet Safety guide will help people become more knowledgeable about the risks and how to manage them. It will be particularly useful for the many thousands of parents who will be participating in the Home Access programme when it is rolled out nationally from the end of the year. myguide will be an important part of the support for the programme to help parents make effective use of the Home Access computers and Internet connectivity to support their children’s learning.”

Commenting, Dr Tanya Byron, author of the review, Safer Children in a Digital World, said:  “Parents need to be internet-confident to be able to help their children manage its risks and make the most of its opportunities. Since my Review, the Government has made good progress on making my recommendations a reality. The UK Council for Children’s Internet Safety (UKCCIS) has been established, advice has been published for parents on Social Networking, and a new set of resources, ‘Know IT All for primary teachers’, has been launched to help schools keep young children safe online. Now, another gap has been filled with the new myguide resource. This means that parents just beginning to learn about the internet can from the outset learn how to keep their children safe and savvy online.”

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