Ofsted: schools should enable young people to manage social media risks

According to the latest Ofsted guidance, schools should be educating students about how to recognise and manage any potential online risks. This is not necessarily as easy as it sounds, especially when many staff feel they know less about social media than the students they teach.

With Ofsted’s expectation that schools place e-safety firmly within their safeguarding procedures, there is a real need for schools to provide staff with adequate and regular training and support.

Some indicators that inspectors cite as exemplifying inadequate e-safety practice in schools include:

  • No evidence of staff training
  • Policies, such as the school’s AUP, are generic and not updated
  • No planned e-safety education across the curriculum

Social media tends to pose the biggest concern for teachers as students spend much of their online time on these sites and they are often cited as places where bullying occurs. Although the majority of these issues take place outside of school hours, it’s important to remember that the school’s e-safety ethos should encompass sharing the message with parents and carers. Opportunities to share good e-safety practice could include information on the school website, workshops or parents’ e-safety courses.

At the ChildProtectionCompany.com, we have delivered over 35,000 online training courses and have worked with a wide variety of schools to help them meet their training needs. We have a range of online safeguarding courses (including a brand new Social Media Awareness course), that have been specifically designed for the education sector and are in line with Ofsted guidance and Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015.

In addition to these courses for school staff, we also have an online parents’ e-safety course which many schools have used to spread the e-safety message into the wider community. Both courses come with a management system that enables you to track take up and evidence this to Ofsted.

For a tailor-made quote for your school, simply call us on 01327 223283 or drop us a line on help@childprotectioncompany.com.


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