Keeping Pupils Safe Online: The Teacher’s View
- It’s illogical, but parents who quite often won’t let their children out on their own will buy them a phone or a tablet and have no idea what they are looking at on them.
- The apps young people use are always changing, and it’s difficult to keep up with them. Take WhatsApp, for example. Children can add people they’ve never met to their WhatsApp group – hundreds of children they don’t necessarily know – and have no idea what these people will do with a message or picture after they’ve sent it. Parents should try to monitor the WhatsApp conversations that their child is having and who they are speaking to.
- Ask if you can look at your child’s phone occasionally so you can check messages, WhatsApp conversations, photos and videos taken. This should be part of a contract between you and them when you buy them a phone or credit for their phone.
- Show an interest in their digital habits and encourage them to tell you what apps they use or groups they belong to. If a child is very reluctant to show a parent what’s on their phone, trust your instinct.
- You need to talk to them about what they are looking at. That’s the most important thing you can do.
- Be honest and direct with them. And emphasise that it’s for their safety and their benefit that you’re taking an interest.
- Make sure that they know what to do if they get themselves into trouble online.
- Sometimes, young people get into situations they think no one else has ever been in, and they’re too embarrassed to tell anyone. So let them know they can tell you anything. And, however shocked you are, you can’t show it.
Source: Vodafone DP