In keeping with the gospel values of All Saints’ and the directives of the UK Safer Internet Centre, our approach to education on the safe use of the internet is predicated upon the school’s learning values of faith, forgiveness, friendship, kindness, respect, and trust, which are instilled through teaching and learning across the whole curriculum, and key skills required for digital citizenship, taught though computing education, as well as visits by educators and experts.
Through discrete and focused teaching sessions, every class is instructed on the three key attitudes of the All Saints’ digital model citizen.
Use of the internet requires a sense of autonomy, independence, ownership and responsibility, which is the first key attitude. Responsibility is explored through curriculum content such as copyright, intellectual property, ownership of media and artefacts (and the responsible storage thereof), and the social aspects of being a responsible digital citizen. In terms of the programme of study for computing, responsibility is taught through the concepts of (for example) responsible versus irresponsible use of technology in the virtual and real worlds, and recognising unacceptable behaviour within the school’s social network or on the World Wide Web. The 5 Responsibilities are discussed by pupils who learn to make connections between digital responsibility and the gospel values.
While the school’s IT network is protected by local security systems and the firewall maintained by the London Grid for Learning, it is necessary to accept the complexities of autonomous and independent use of the internet and the world wide web by our pupils at school, at home, and in public, on a wide range of protected and unprotected devices and media. Therefore, our five principles of safety are taught in the computing context, with occasional comparison to safety rules in the real world. Parents should play a supporting role in developing the attitudes of a safe and secure digital citizen by helping children adopt the 5 Safeties – rules which may help parents and children enjoy a happier, healthier and safer experience in cyberspace. In computing education in the classroom, the five safety rules are constantly reiterated through a caring, nurturing pedagogy which allows pupils the freedom to ask questions about their own experience of the internet, and what constitutes unacceptable or inappropriate content or behaviour online.
Of the three key attitudes, respect has the most obvious transferability to both the school’s gospel values and conventional standards of good behaviour. In the context of our computing education programme, the topics of online bullying, mental health and privacy/publicity are explored through the Safer Internet Centre’s educational content.
All our classes receive internet awareness lessons in the first 3 weeks of a new class year. The children sign an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP). Throughout the year the children are reminded about online safety through visitor talks and class lessons.