We believe that ICT in the 21st Century is an essential resource to support learning and teaching, as well as being an integral part to our future as a country. Consequently, schools need to build in the use of these technologies in order to arm our children with the skills to access life-long learning and employment.
Information and Communications Technology, or computing includes the use of web-based and mobile learning as a tool for learning. It is also important to recognise the constant and fast paced evolution of ICT within our society as a whole. Currently the internet technologies children and young people are using both inside and outside of the classroom include:
- Learning Platforms and Virtual Learning Environments
- E-mail and Instant Messaging
- Chat Rooms and Social Networking
- Blogs and Wikis
- Video Broadcasting
- Music Downloading
- Mobile/ Smart phones with text, video and/ or web functionality
Other mobile devices with web functionality
Whilst exciting and beneficial both in and out of the context of education, much ICT, particularly web-based resources, are not consistently policed. All users need to be aware of the range of risks associated with the use of these Internet technologies.
At our school, we understand the responsibility to educate our pupils on eSafety issues, teaching them the appropriate behaviours and critical thinking skills to enable them to remain both safe and legal when using the internet and related technologies, in and beyond the context of the classroom.
Schools hold personal data on learners, staff and other people to help them conduct their day-to-day activities. Some of this information is sensitive and could be used by another person or criminal organisation to cause harm or distress to an individual. The loss of sensitive information can result in media coverage, and potentially damage the reputation of the school. This can make it more difficult for your school to use technology to benefit learners.
Everybody in the school has a shared responsibility to secure any sensitive information used in their day to day professional duties and even staff not directly involved in data handling should be made aware of the risks and threats and how to minimise them.
Both this policy and the Acceptable Use Agreement (for all staff, governors, visitors and pupils) are inclusive of both fixed and mobile internet; technologies provided by the school (such as PCs, laptops, personal digital assistants (PDAs), tablets, webcams, whiteboards, voting systems, digital video equipment, etc); and technologies owned by pupils and staff, but brought onto school premises (such as laptops, mobile phones, camera phones, PDAs and portable media players, etc).
Authorised ICT staff may inspect any ICT equipment owned or leased by the School at any time without prior notice.
All monitoring, surveillance or investigative activities are conducted by ICT authorised staff and comply with the Data Protection Act 1998, the Human Rights Act 1998, the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) and the Lawful Business Practice Regulations 2000.
Please note that personal communications using School ICT may be unavoidably included in any business communications that are monitored, intercepted and/or recorded.
Here are some of websites aimed at teaching children about possible dangers of using the internet: