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  • Writer's pictureHailei Spencer

How can parents and schools work together to protect our children?

In today’s digital world, it is more important than ever for schools and parents to work together to ensure that children remain safe when using the internet. With the emergence of online gaming, it is even more important to keep children safe from potential risks such as cyberbullying, scams, and inappropriate content. Recently, a school in our local area was harangued by the local press for not doing enough to stop online bullying within online games. The comments on the page, both on the website and social media, were quite damaging to the school's reputation. However, is it the school's sole responsibility to deal with this kind of incident? Or should parents be doing more to keep their children safe online?

Truth be told, parents and schools need to work together to crack this one and schools may need to take the lead and guide the parents to do the right thing.

Here are some tips for how schools and parents can work together to keep children safe online:

  1. Develop an online safety policy: Schools and parents should work together to develop an online safety policy that outlines the expectations and rules for using the internet in a safe and responsible manner. This policy should include clear guidelines for acceptable use of the internet, such as no sharing of personal information and how to communicate with people online. Working with parents will encourage them to become more involved in their child's safety and understand what to look out for at home.

  2. Educate children about online safety: Schools and parents should provide regular education to children about the risks of using the internet and how to stay safe. This should include information about cyberbullying, scams, and online gaming. It’s also important to discuss how to report any suspicious activity and talk about the potential consequences of online behaviour. As a school it is not your job to educate parents - however, in order to have an effective guidelines, parents will need to be unskilled to know how to protect their children at home. After all, most online bullying happens outside of school hours.

  3. Monitor online activity: Schools and parents should monitor the online activity of children to ensure they are not engaging in risky behaviours. This includes monitoring social media accounts and online gaming activity. Parents should also talk to their children regularly to ensure they understand the dangers and to check in on their online activity. Parents need to understand that they aren't being overbearing by 'checking in' with their children, but being responsible.

  4. Use parental controls: Schools and parents should use parental control tools to help monitor and block access to inappropriate content and websites. This is especially important for online gaming, where there is a risk of exposure to inappropriate content or contact with strangers. The NSPCC have an excellent resource where parents can learn more about keeping children safe online and I would encourage you to share this with parents.

By setting clear expectations and monitoring activity, parents and schools can ensure that children are safe and responsible when using the internet.

The government are yet to provide social media and gaming companies with effective guidelines to keep our young people safe, so it is our responsibility to do this for now - we owe it to our children!

At MDM, we offer training to staff, parents and children (primary, secondary and post 16) about how to stay safe online and how to keep others safe online.

If you'd like to find out more about what we can do for your school or you want some advice on internet safety, please email us on or call 01249 588228.


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