Online Safety Policy and Acceptable Use Policies

 

 

LDST

RAINFORD CHURCH OF ENGLAND PRIMARY SCHOOL

AND RAINDROPS PRESCHOOL

 

 

Learning and growing together to achieve our best in the love of God’

 

On-line Safety Policy

 

For LGB adoption by CDCS Committee: November 21  

 

Signed……………………………………………  Chair of Committee

Signed……………………………………………  Headteacher

 

 

 

Rainford C.E. Mission Statement

 

‘Learning and growing together to achieve our best in the love of God’

 

School Aims

 

In order to prepare today’s children for tomorrow’s challenges, Rainford CE Primary Schools aims to achieve the following:

 

  • Every child will be encouraged to understand the meaning and significance of faith, experience God’s love and develop the spirituality to enable them to live out our Christian values of love, joy, peace, friendship, forgiveness, perseverance and justice

 

  • Every child will achieve their full potential through being a highly motivated, resilient and independent learner who embraces new experiences, has confidence to tackle challenges and go onto develop a lifelong love of learning.

 

  • Every child will value themselves as a unique individual with special qualities and strengths developing self-discipline and honesty; taking responsibility for their own actions and appreciating their ability to make a positive difference in the world.

 

  • Every child will appreciate and respect others, celebrate differences between individuals and groups and respect and care for God’s creation and the environment.

 

  • Every child will be encouraged to make healthy choices and appreciate the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.

In order to do this, we will constantly reflect the Christian ethos of our school in our relationships with our children, their families, our staff, the church and the wider community.

 

OUR TRUST’S PRAYER

 

We thank you God of Love, for the gift of children.

Bless the work of our Trust, that in all we do

young people may grow in wisdom and stature,

and so come to know you, to love you and

to serve you as Jesus did.

We make this prayer in his name who is God

with you and the Holy Spirit, now and forever.

Amen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introduction

Key people / dates

Rainford C.E. Primary School ]

Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

[Mrs Emma Shawcross              ]

Designated Data Protection Lead

[Mrs Louise Thompson              ]

Trust Data Protection Officer

Alison Tennant

Alison.tennant@ldst.org.uk

07375 365 702

Online-safety lead

(if different)

[                  ]

Online-safety / safeguarding

link governor

 [Mrs Philippa Burke                  ]

PSHE/RSHE lead

[Mrs Emma Shawcross              ]

Network manager / other technical support

[Mark Byrom (St Helens Council ]

Date of next review and by whom

To be reviewed by the Board of Directors by 31st August 2022.

 

What is this policy?

Online safety is an integral part of safeguarding and requires a whole school, cross-curricular approach and collaboration between key school leads. Accordingly, this policy is written in line with ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ 2021 (KCSIE), ‘Teaching Online Safety in Schools’ 2019, statutory RSHE guidance 2019 and other statutory documents. It complements existing and forthcoming subjects including Health, Relationships and Sex Education, Citizenship and Computing; it is designed to sit alongside your school’s statutory Safeguarding Policy. Any issues and concerns with online safety must follow the school’s safeguarding and child protection procedures.

 

Who is it for; when is it reviewed?

This policy should be a living document, subject to full annual review but also amended where necessary during the year in response to developments in the school and local area. The DfE Guidance “Get Help with Remote Education” should be read in conjunction with this policy to see what needs changing in the light of potential closure, remote learning and alternative arrangements at school. Although many aspects will be informed by legislation and regulations, you should involve staff, governors, pupils/students and parents in writing and reviewing the policy (KCSIE stresses making use of teachers’ day-to-day experience on the ground). This will help ensure all stakeholders understand the rules that are in place and why, and that the policy affects day-to-day practice. Pupils/students could help to design a version in language their peers understand or help you to audit compliance. Acceptable Use Policies for different stakeholders help with this – ensure these are reviewed alongside this overarching policy. Any changes to this policy should be immediately disseminated to all the above stakeholders.

Who is in charge of online safety?

You may have a named online-safety lead at your school (see above); this person may or may not be the designated safeguarding lead (DSL), but KCSIE makes clear that “the designated safeguarding lead should take lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection (including online safety).”

 

What are the main online safety risks today?

Online-safety risks are traditionally categorised as one of the 3 Cs: Content, Contact or Conduct (identified by Professor Tanya Byron’s 2008 report “Safer children in a digital world”). These three areas remain a helpful way to understand the risks and potential school response, whether technological or educational. They do not stand in isolation, however, and it is important to understand the interplay between all three.

Many of these new risks are mentioned in KCSIE 2021, e.g. extra-familial harms where children are at risk of abuse or exploitation to multiple harms in situations outside their families including sexual exploitation, criminal exploitation, serious youth violence, upskirting and sticky design.

 

In past and potential future remote learning and lockdowns, there is a greater risk for grooming and exploitation (CSE, CCE and radicalisation) as children spend more time at home and on devices. There is a real risk that some of your pupils/students may have missed opportunities to disclose such abuse during the lockdowns or periods of absence.

 

Following the government's investigation into peer-on-peer sexual abuse and Ofsted review, schools will need to review their policies to ensure appropriate processes are in place to allow pupils/students to report sexual harassment and abuse concerns freely, knowing these will be taken seriously and dealt with swiftly and appropriately – ensure pupils/students are aware of the new NSPCC helpline and your school’s  internal reporting channels.

 

How will this policy be communicated?

This policy can only impact upon practice if it is a regularly updated living document. It must be accessible to and understood by all stakeholders. It will be communicated in the following ways:

  • Posted on the school website
  • Available on the internal staff network/drive
  • Available in paper format in the staffroom
  • Part of school induction pack for all new staff (including temporary, supply and non-classroom-based staff)
  • Integral to safeguarding updates and training for all staff (especially in September refreshers)
  • Clearly reflected in the Acceptable Use Policies (AUPs) for staff, volunteers, contractors, governors, pupils/students and parents/carers (which must be in accessible language appropriate to these groups).
  • AUPs issued to whole school community, on entry to the school, with annual reminders of where to find them if unchanged, and reissued if updated after annual review
  • AUPs are displayed in appropriate classrooms/corridors (not just in Computing corridors/classrooms)
  • Reviews of this online-safety policy will include input from staff, pupils/students and other stakeholders, helping to ensure further engagement

 

 

Contents

NB – don’t edit the names or otherwise update this page; edit the titles in the relevant section. This table will then automatically update when you save/exit; if not, click on the table below and press F9.

 

Introduction.. 3

Key people / dates. 3

What is this policy?. 3

Who is it for; when is it reviewed?. 3

Who is in charge of online safety?. 4

What are the main online safety risks today?. 4

How will this policy be communicated?. 4

Contents. 6

Overview.. 8

Aims. 8

Further Help and Support. 8

Scope.. 8

Roles and responsibilities. 9

Headteacher/Principal – [ Mrs Anya Richardson]. 9

Designated Safeguarding Lead / Online Safety Lead – [ Mrs Emma Shawcross]. 10

Governing Body, led by Online Safety/Data Protection/ Safeguarding Link Governor – [ Mrs Philippa Burke]. 12

All staff. 13

PSHE / RSHE Lead/s – [ Mrs Emma Shawcross ]. 14

Computing Lead – [ Mrs Ruth McVey ]. 14

Subject / aspect leaders. 15

Network Manager/technician – [Mr Mark Byrom/Mr Lee Pearson]. 15

Designated Data Protection Lead (DDPL) / Data Protection Officer– [ Mrs Louise Thompson] and Alison Tennant (DPO). 16

IT Support Providers - [St Helens Council]. 17

Volunteers and contractors (including tutor). 17

Pupils/students. 17

Parents/carers. 18

External groups including parent associations – [ INSERT NAME/S OF GROUP/S ]. 19

Education and curriculum... 19

Handling online-safety concerns and incidents. 20

Actions where there are concerns about a child.. 21

Sexting – sharing nudes and semi-nudes. 23

Upskirting.. 24

Bullying.. 24

Sexual violence and harassment. 24

Misuse of school technology (devices, systems, networks or platforms). 25

Social media incidents. 25

Data protection and data security.. 26

Appropriate filtering and monitoring.. 26

Electronic communications. 27

Email 27

School website.. 28

Cloud platforms. 29

Digital images and video.. 30

Social media.. 31

Rainford C.E. Primary School’s SM presence.. 31

Staff, pupils’/students’ and parents’ SM presence.. 32

Device usage.. 34

Personal devices including wearable technology and bring your own device (BYOD)  34

Network / internet access on school devices. 35

Trips / events away from school 36

Searching and confiscation.. 36

Other Documentation/Guidance Relevant to this Policy.. 37

 

 

Overview

Aims

This policy aims to:

  • Set out expectations for all Rainford C.E. Primary School community members’ online behaviour, attitudes and activities and use of digital technology (including when devices are offline)
  • Help all stakeholders to recognise that online/digital behaviour standards (including social media activity) must be upheld beyond the confines of the school gates and school day, and regardless of device or platform
  • Facilitate the safe, responsible, respectful and positive use of technology to support teaching & learning, increase attainment and prepare children and young people for the risks and opportunities of today’s and tomorrow’s digital world, to survive and thrive online
  • Help school staff working with children to understand their roles and responsibilities to work safely and responsibly with technology and the online world:
    • for the protection and benefit of the children and young people in their care, and
    • for their own protection, minimising misplaced or malicious allegations and to better understand their own standards and practice
    • for the benefit of the school, supporting the school ethos, aims and objectives, and protecting the reputation of the school and profession
  • Establish clear structures by which online misdemeanours will be treated, and procedures to follow where there are doubts or concerns (with reference to other school policies such as Behaviour Policy or Anti-Bullying Policy)

 

Further Help and Support

Internal school channels should always be followed first for reporting and support, as documented in school policy documents, especially in response to incidents, which should be reported in line with your Safeguarding Policy. The DSL will handle referrals to local authority multi-agency safeguarding hubs (MASH) and normally the headteacher will handle referrals to the LA designated officer (LADO). The local authority, academy trust or third-party support organisations you work with may also have advisors to offer general support.

Beyond this, external support and helplines for both pupils/students and staff, including the Professionals’ Online-Safety Helpline from the UK Safer Internet Centre and the new NSPCC Report Abuse Helpline for sexual harassment or abuse, as well as hotlines for hate crime, terrorism and fraud which might be useful to share with parents, and anonymous support for children and young people.

Scope

This policy applies to all members of the Rainford C.E. Primary School community (including teaching and support staff, supply teachers and tutors engaged under the DfE National Tutoring Programme, governors, volunteers, contractors, students/pupils, parents/carers, visitors and community users) who have access to our digital technology, networks and systems, whether on-site or remotely, and at any time, or who use technology in their school role.

 

Roles and responsibilities

This school is a community and all members have a duty to behave respectfully online and offline, to use technology for teaching and learning and to prepare for life after school, and to immediately report any concerns or inappropriate behaviour, to protect staff, pupils/students, families and the reputation of the school. We learn together, make honest mistakes together and support each other in a world that is online and offline at the same time.

 

Headteacher/Principal – [ Mrs Anya Richardson ]

Key responsibilities:

  • Support safeguarding leads and technical staff as they review protections for pupils/students in the home and remote-learning procedures, rules and safeguards
  • Foster a culture of safeguarding where online safety is fully integrated into whole-school safeguarding
  • Oversee the activities of the designated safeguarding lead and ensure that the DSL responsibilities listed in the section below are being followed and fully supported
  • Ensure that policies and procedures are followed by all staff
  • Undertake training in offline and online safeguarding, in accordance with statutory guidance and relevant Local Safeguarding Partnerships
  • Liaise with the designated safeguarding lead on all online-safety issues which might arise and receive regular updates on school issues and broader policy and practice information
  • Take overall responsibility for data management and information security ensuring the school’s provision follows best practice in information handling; work with the DPO, DSL and governors to ensure a GDPR-compliant framework for storing data, but helping to ensure that child protection is always put first and data-protection processes support careful and legal sharing of information
  • Ensure the school implements and makes effective use of appropriate ICT systems and services including school-safe filtering and monitoring, protected email systems and that all technology including cloud systems are implemented according to child-safety first principles
  • Be responsible for ensuring that all staff receive suitable training to carry out their safeguarding and online safety roles
  • Understand and make all staff aware of procedures to be followed in the event of a serious online safeguarding incident
  • Ensure suitable risk assessments are undertaken so the curriculum meets needs of pupils/students, including risk of children being radicalised
  • Ensure that there is a system in place to monitor and support staff (e.g. network manager) who carry out internal technical online-safety procedures
  • Ensure governors are regularly updated on the nature and effectiveness of the school’s arrangements for online safety
  • Ensure the school website meets statutory requirements (see appendices for website audit document)

 

Designated Safeguarding Lead / Online Safety Lead – Mrs Emma Shawcross

Key responsibilities (remember the DSL can delegate certain online safety duties, e.g. to the online-safety coordinator, but not the overall responsibility; this assertion and all quotes below are from Keeping Children Safe in Education 2021):

  • “The designated safeguarding lead should take lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection [including online safety] … this lead responsibility should not be delegated”
  • Work with the HT and technical staff to review protections for pupils/students in the home and remote-learning procedures, rules and safeguards.
  • Where the online-safety coordinator is not the named DSL or deputy DSL, ensure there is regular review and open communication between these roles and that the DSL’s clear overarching responsibility for online safety is not compromised
  • Ensure “An effective approach to online safety [that] empowers a school or college to protect and educate the whole school or college community in their use of technology and establishes mechanisms to identify, intervene in and escalate any incident where appropriate.”
  • “Liaise with staff (especially pastoral support staff, school nurses, IT Technicians, and SENCOs, or the named person with oversight for SEN in a college and Senior Mental Health Leads) on matters of safety and safeguarding (including online and digital safety) and when deciding whether to make a referral by liaising with relevant agencies.”
  • Take day-to-day responsibility for online safety issues and be aware of the potential for serious child protection concerns
  • Remind staff of safeguarding considerations as part of a review of remote learning procedures and technology, including that the same principles of online safety and behaviour apply
  • Work with the headteacher, Designated Data Protection Lead/DPO and governors to ensure a GDPR-compliant framework for storing data, but helping to ensure that child protection is always put first and data-protection processes support careful and legal sharing of information
  • Stay up to date with the latest trends in online safeguarding and “undertake Prevent awareness training.”
  • Review and update this policy, other online safety documents (e.g. Acceptable Use Policies) and the strategy on which they are based (in harmony with policies for behaviour, safeguarding, Prevent and others) and submit for review to the governors/trustees.
  • Receive regular updates in online safety issues and legislation, be aware of local and school trends.
  • Ensure that online safety education is embedded across the curriculum in line with the statutory RSHE guidance (e.g. by use of the updated UKCIS framework ‘Education for a Connected World – 2020 edition’) and beyond, in wider school life
  • Promote an awareness of and commitment to online safety throughout the school community, with a strong focus on parents, who are often appreciative of school support in this area, but also including hard-to-reach parents.
  • Communicate regularly with SLT and the designated safeguarding and online safety governor/committee to discuss current issues (anonymised), review incident logs and filtering/change control logs and discuss how filtering and monitoring work and have been functioning/helping.
  • Ensure all staff are aware of the procedures that need to be followed in the event of an online safety incident, and that these are logged in the same way as any other safeguarding incident.
  • Ensure adequate provision for staff to flag issues when not in school and for pupils/students to disclose issues when off site, especially when in isolation/quarantine/lockdown, e.g. a safe, simple, online form on the school home page about ‘something that’s worrying me’ that gets mailed securely to the DSL inbox.
  • Oversee and discuss ‘appropriate filtering and monitoring’ with governors (is it physical or technical?) and ensure staff are aware (Ofsted inspectors have asked classroom teachers about this).
  • Ensure the updated DfE guidance on Sexual Violence & Sexual Harassment Between Children in Schools & Colleges is followed throughout the school and that staff adopt a zero-tolerance, whole school approach to this, as well as to bullying.
  • Facilitate training and advice for all staff, including supply teachers:
    • all staff must read KCSIE Part 1 and all those working with children Annex B – translations are available in 12 community languages at lgfl.net
    • Annex A is now a condensed version of Part one and can be provided (instead of Part one) to those staff who do not directly work with children, if the governing body thinks it will provide a better basis for those staff to promote the welfare and safeguarding of children.
    • it would also be advisable for all staff to be aware of Annex D (online safety)
    • cascade knowledge of risks and opportunities throughout the organisation
  • Pay particular attention to online tutors this year, both those engaged by the school as part of the DfE scheme who can be asked to sign the contractor AUP, and those hired by parents.

Governing Body, led by Online Safety/Data Protection/ Safeguarding Link Governor – [ Mrs Philippa Burke ]

Key responsibilities (quotes are taken from Keeping Children Safe in Education 2021)

  • Approve this policy and strategy and subsequently review its effectiveness, e.g. by asking the questions in the helpful document from the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCIS) Online safety in schools and colleges: Questions from the Governing Board
  • Ask about how the school has reviewed protections for pupils/students in the home (including when with online tutors) and remote-learning procedures, rules and safeguards
  • “Ensure an appropriate senior member of staff, from the school or college leadership team, is appointed to the role of DSL [with] lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection (including online safety) [with] the appropriate status and authority [and] time, funding, training, resources and support…”
  • Support the school in encouraging parents and the wider community to become engaged in online safety activities
  • Have regular strategic reviews with the online-safety co-ordinator / DSL and incorporate online safety into standing discussions of safeguarding at governor meetings
  • Where the online-safety coordinator is not the named DSL or deputy DSL, ensure that there is regular review and open communication between these roles and that the DSL’s clear overarching responsibility for online safety is not compromised
  • Work with the Designated Data Protection Lead/DPO, DSL and headteacher to ensure a GDPR-compliant framework for storing data, but helping to ensure that child protection is always put first and data -protection processes support careful and legal sharing of information
  • Check all school staff have read Part 1 of KCSIE; SLT and all working directly with children have read Annex B; check that Annex D on Online Safety reflects practice in your school
  • “Ensure that all staff undergo safeguarding and child protection training (including online safety) at induction. The training should be regularly updated […] in line with advice from the local three safeguarding partners […] integrated, aligned and considered as part of the overarching safeguarding approach.”
  • “Ensure appropriate filters and appropriate monitoring systems are in place [but…] be careful that ‘overblocking’ does not lead to unreasonable restrictions as to what children can be taught with regard to online teaching and safeguarding”.
  • “Ensure that children are taught about safeguarding, including online safety […] as part of providing a broad and balanced curriculum […] Consider a whole school or college approach to online safety [with] a clear policy on the use of mobile technology.” NB – you may wish to refer to Teaching Online Safety in Schools 2019 and investigate/adopt the UKCIS cross-curricular framework Education for a Connected World – 2020 edition to support a whole-school approach

 

All staff

Key responsibilities:

  • In 2021 pay particular attention to safeguarding provisions for home-learning and remote-teaching technologies There are further details in the staff AUP.
  • Recognise that RSHE is now statutory and that it is a whole-school subject requiring the support of all staff; online safety has become core to this new subject
  • Understand that online safety is a core part of safeguarding; as such it is part of everyone’s job – never think that someone else will pick it up
  • Know who the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) and Online Safety Lead (OSL) are [ delete/amend if same person; insert name/s here ]
  • Read Part 1, Annex B and Annex D of Keeping Children Safe in Education (whilst Part 1 is statutory for all staff, Annex B for SLT and those working directly with children, it is good practice for all staff to read all three sections). Annex A is now a condensed version of Part one and can be provided (instead of Part one) to those staff who do not directly work with children, if the governing body think it will provide a better basis for those staff to promote the welfare and safeguard children.
  • Read and follow this policy in conjunction with the school’s main safeguarding policy
  • Record online-safety incidents in the same way as any safeguarding incident and report in accordance with school procedures.
  • Understand that safeguarding is often referred to as a jigsaw puzzle – you may have discovered the missing piece so do not keep anything to yourself
  • Sign and follow the staff acceptable use policy and code of conduct/handbook
  • Notify the DSL/OSL if policy does not reflect practice in your school and follow escalation procedures if concerns are not promptly acted upon
  • Identify opportunities to thread online safety through all school activities as part of a whole school approach in line with the RSHE curriculum, both outside the classroom and within the curriculum, supporting curriculum/stage/subject leads, and making the most of unexpected learning opportunities as they arise (which have a unique value for pupils/students)
  • Whenever overseeing the use of technology in school or for homework or remote teaching, encourage and talk about appropriate behaviour and how to get help and consider potential risks and the age-appropriateness of websites (find out what appropriate filtering and monitoring systems are in place)
  • When supporting pupils/students remotely, be mindful of additional safeguarding considerations – the 20 Safeguarding Principles for Remote Lessons infographic from LGfL is useful and applies to all online learning.
  • Carefully supervise and guide pupils/students when engaged in learning activities involving online technology, supporting them with search skills, critical thinking, age appropriate materials and signposting, and legal issues such as copyright and GDPR.
  • Be aware of security best-practice at all times, including password hygiene and phishing strategies.
  • Prepare and check all online sources and resources before using
  • Encourage pupils/students to follow their acceptable use policy at home as well as at school, remind them about it and enforce school sanctions.
  • Notify the DSL/OSL of new trends and issues before they become a problem
  • Take a zero-tolerance approach to bullying and sexual harassment (your DSL will disseminate relevant information from the updated 2021 DfE document on this)
  • Be aware that you are often most likely to see or overhear online-safety issues (particularly relating to bullying and sexual harassment and violence) in the playground, corridors, toilets and other communal areas outside the classroom – let the DSL/OSL know
  • Receive regular updates from the DSL/OSL and have a healthy curiosity for online safeguarding issues
  • Model safe, responsible and professional behaviours in their own use of technology. This includes outside the school hours and site, and on social media, in all aspects upholding the reputation of the school and of the professional reputation of all staff. More guidance on this point can be found in this Online Reputation guidance for schools from LGfL.

 

PSHE / RSHE Lead/s – [ Mrs Emma Shawcross ]

Key responsibilities:

  • As listed in the ‘all staff’ section, plus:
  • Embed consent, mental wellbeing, healthy relationships and staying safe online into the PSHE / Relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and health education curriculum. “This will include being taught what positive, healthy and respectful online relationships look like, the effects of their online actions on others and knowing how to recognise and display respectful behaviour online. Throughout these subjects, teachers will address online safety and appropriate behaviour in an age appropriate way that is relevant to their pupils’ lives.”
  • This will complement the computing curriculum, which covers the principles of online safety at all key stages, with progression in the content to reflect the different and escalating risks that pupils/students face. This includes how to use technology safely, responsibly, respectfully and securely, and where to go for help and support when they have concerns about content or contact on the internet or other online technologies.
  • Work closely with the DSL/OSL and all other staff to ensure an understanding of the issues, approaches and messaging within PSHE / RSHE.
  • Note that an RSHE policy should now be included on the school website.
  • Work closely with the Computing Subject Lead to avoid overlap but ensure a complementary whole-school approach, and with all other lead staff to embed the same whole-school approach

 

Computing Lead – [ Mrs Ruth McVey ]

Key responsibilities:

  • As listed in the ‘all staff’ section, plus:
  • Oversee the delivery of the online safety element of the Computing curriculum in accordance with the national curriculum
  • Work closely with the RSHE lead to avoid overlap but ensure a complementary whole-school approach
  • Work closely with the DSL/OSL and all other staff to ensure an understanding of the issues, approaches and messaging within Computing
  • Collaborate with technical staff and others responsible for ICT use in school to ensure a common and consistent approach, in line with acceptable-use agreements

 

Subject / aspect leaders

Key responsibilities:

  • As listed in the ‘all staff’ section, plus:
  • Look for opportunities to embed online safety in your subject or aspect, especially as part of the new RSHE curriculum, and model positive attitudes and approaches to staff and pupils/students alike
  • Consider how the UKCIS framework Education for a Connected World and Teaching Online Safety in Schools can be applied in your context
  • Work closely with the DSL/OSL and all other staff to ensure an understanding of the issues, approaches and messaging within Computing
  • Ensure subject specific action plans also have an online-safety element

 

Network Manager/technician – [ Mr Mark Byrom ]

Key responsibilities:

  • As listed in the ‘all staff’ section, plus:
  • Support the HT and DSL team as they review protections for pupils/students in the home and remote-learning procedures, rules and safeguards
  • Keep up to date with the school’s online safety policy and technical information in order to effectively carry out their online safety role and to inform and update others as relevant
  • Meet the RSHE lead to see how the online-safety curriculum delivered through this new subject can complement the school IT system and vice versa, and ensure no conflicts between educational messages and practice.
  • Work closely with the designated safeguarding lead / online safety lead / designated data protection lead/DPO to ensure that school systems and networks reflect school policy
  • Ensure the above stakeholders understand the consequences of existing services and of any changes to these systems (especially in terms of access to personal and sensitive records / data and to systems such as YouTube mode, web filtering settings, sharing permissions for files on cloud platforms etc
  • Support and advise on the implementation of ‘appropriate filtering and monitoring’ as decided by the DSL and senior leadership team
  • Maintain up-to-date documentation of the school’s online security and technical procedures
  • To report online-safety related issues that come to their attention in line with school policy
  • Manage the school’s systems, networks and devices, according to a strict password policy, with systems in place for detection of misuse and malicious attack, with adequate protection, encryption and backup for data, including disaster recovery plans, and auditable access controls
  • Monitor the use of school technology, online platforms and social media presence and that any misuse/attempted misuse is identified and reported in line with school policy.

Designated Data Protection Lead (DDPL) / Data Protection Officer– [ Mrs Louise Thompson] and Alison Tennant (DPO)

Key responsibilities:

  • Be aware of references to the relationship between data protection and safeguarding in key Department for Education documents ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ and ‘Data protection: a toolkit for schools’ (August 2018), especially this quote from the latter document:

 

“GDPR does not prevent, or limit, the sharing of information for the purposes of keeping children safe. Lawful and secure information sharing between schools, Children’s Social Care, and other local agencies, is essential for keeping children safe and ensuring they get the support they need. The Data Protection Act 2018 introduced ‘safeguarding’ as a reason to be able to process sensitive, personal information, even without consent (DPA, Part 2,18; Schedule 8, 4) When Designated Safeguarding Leads in schools are considering whether, or not, to share safeguarding information (especially with other agencies) it is considered best practice for them to record who they are sharing that information with and for what reason. If they have taken a decision not to seek consent from the data subject and/or parent/carer that should also be recorded within the safeguarding file. All relevant information can be shared without consent if to gain consent would place a child at risk. Fears about sharing information must not be allowed to stand in the way of promoting the welfare and protecting the safety of children.”

The same document states that the retention schedule for safeguarding records may be required to be set as ‘Very long term need (until pupil is aged 25 or older)’. Please follow LDST’s retention schedule – eg primary schools send all pupil information to secondary schools (secondary schools are responsible for holding onto information to age 25 or older – primary schools do not retain copies [the retention schedules clearly outline the requirement and any identified variations that may apply, eg pupil home schooled/files to LA etc]).

  • Work with the DSL, headteacher and governors to ensure frameworks are in place for the protection of data and of safeguarding information sharing as outlined above.
  • Ensure that all access to safeguarding data is limited as appropriate, and also monitored and audited

IT Support Providers - [St. Helens Council]

Key responsibilities:

  • To ensure all services are managed on behalf of the school in line with school policies, following data handling procedures as relevant
  • Work closely with the Headteacher, DSL and DDPL to ensure they understand who the nominated contacts are and what they can do / what data access they have, as well as the implications of all existing services and changes to settings that you might request – e.g. for YouTube restricted mode, internet filtering and monitoring settings, firewall port changes, pupil e-mail settings, and sharing settings for any cloud services such as Microsoft Office 365 and Google G Suite.

 

 

Volunteers and contractors (including tutor)

Key responsibilities:

  • Read, understand, sign and adhere to an acceptable use policy (AUP)
  • Report any concerns, no matter how small, to the designated safety lead / online safety coordinator as named in the AUP
  • Maintain an awareness of current online safety issues and guidance
  • Model safe, responsible and professional behaviours in their own use of technology at school and as part of remote teaching or any online communications
  • Note that as per AUP agreement a contractor will never attempt to arrange any meeting, including tutoring session, without the full prior knowledge and approval of the school, and will never do so directly with a pupil. The same applies to any private/direct communication with a pupil.

 

Pupils/students

Key responsibilities:

  • Read, understand, sign and adhere to the pupil/student acceptable use policy and review this annually
  • Treat home learning during any isolation/quarantine or POD/school lockdown in the same way as regular learning in school and behave as if a teacher or parent were watching the screen
  • Avoid any private communication or use of personal logins/systems to communicate with or arrange meetings with school staff or tutors
  • Understand the importance of reporting abuse, misuse or access to inappropriate materials, including any concerns about a member of school staff or supply teacher or online tutor
  • Know what action to take if they or someone they know feels worried or vulnerable when using online technology, at school, home or anywhere else.
  • To understand the importance of adopting safe and responsible behaviours and good online safety practice when using digital technologies outside of school and realise that the school’s acceptable use policies cover actions out of school, including on social media
  • Remember the rules on the misuse of school technology – devices and logins used at home should be used just like if they were in full view of a teacher.
  • Understand the benefits/opportunities and risks/dangers of the online world and know who to talk to at school or outside school if there are problems

 

Parents/carers

Key responsibilities:

  • Read, sign and promote the school’s parental acceptable use policy (AUP) and read the pupil AUP and encourage their children to follow it
  • Consult with the school if they have any concerns about their children’s and others’ use of technology
  • Promote positive online safety and model safe, responsible, respectful and positive behaviours in their own use of technology, including on social media: not sharing other’s images or details without permission and refraining from posting negative, threatening or violent comments about others, including the school staff, volunteers, governors, contractors, pupils/students or other parents/carers.
  • Encourage children to engage fully in home-learning during any period of isolation/quarantine or bubble/school closure and flag any concerns
  • Support the child during remote learning to avoid video calls in a bedroom if possible and if not, to ensure the child is fully dressed and not in bed, with the camera pointing away from beds/bedding/personal information etc. and the background blurred or changed where possible.
  • If organising private online tuition, remain in the room if possible, ensure the child knows tutors should not arrange new sessions directly with the child or attempt to communicate privately

External groups including parent associations – [ All Saints’ Clergy, F.O.R.C.E.S.]

Key responsibilities:

  • Any external individual/organisation will sign an acceptable use policy prior to using technology or the internet within school
  • Support the school in promoting online safety and data protection
  • Model safe, responsible, respectful and positive behaviours in their own use of technology, including on social media: not sharing other’s images or details without permission and refraining from posting negative, threatening or violent comments about others, including the school staff, volunteers, governors, contractors, pupils/students or other parents/carers

 

Education and curriculum

The following subjects have the clearest online safety links (see the relevant role descriptors above for more information):

  • Relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and health (also known as RSHE or PSHE)
  • Computing

However, as stated in the role descriptors above, it is the role of all staff to identify opportunities to thread online safety through all school activities, both outside the classroom and within the curriculum, supporting curriculum/stage/subject leads, and making the most of unexpected learning opportunities as they arise (which have a unique value for pupils/students)

Whenever overseeing the use of technology (devices, the internet, new technology such as augmented reality, etc) in school or setting as homework tasks, all staff should encourage sensible use, monitor what pupils/students are doing and consider potential dangers and the age appropriateness of websites (ask your DSL what appropriate filtering and monitoring policies are in place).

Equally, all staff should carefully supervise and guide pupils/students when engaged in learning activities involving online technology (including, extra-curricular, extended school activities if relevant and remote teaching), supporting them with search skills, critical thinking (e.g. fake news), age appropriate materials and signposting, and legal issues such as copyright and data law.  

At [ Rainford C.E. Primary School ], we recognise that online safety and broader digital resilience must be thread throughout the curriculum and that is why we are working to adopt the cross-curricular framework ‘Education for a Connected World – 2020 edition’ from UKCIS (the UK Council for Internet Safety).

Annual reviews of curriculum plans / schemes of work (including for SEND pupils/students) are used as an opportunity to follow this framework more closely in its key areas of Self-image and Identity, Online relationships, Online reputation, Online bullying, Managing online information, Health, Wellbeing and lifestyle, Privacy and security, and Copyright and ownership.

 

Handling online-safety concerns and incidents

It is vital that all staff recognise that online-safety is a part of safeguarding (as well as being a curriculum strand of Computing, PSHE/RSHE and Citizenship).

General concerns must be handled in the same way as any other safeguarding concern; safeguarding is often referred to as a jigsaw puzzle, so all stakeholders should err on the side of talking to the online-safety lead / designated safeguarding lead to contribute to the overall picture or highlight what might not yet be a problem.

Support staff will often have a unique insight and opportunity to find out about issues first in the playground, corridors, toilets and other communal areas outside the classroom (particularly relating to bullying and sexual harassment and violence).

School procedures for dealing with online -safety will be mostly detailed in the following policies (primarily in the first key document):

  • Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
  • Peer on Peer Abuse Policy (if separate)
  • Anti-Bullying Policy
  • Behaviour Policy (including school sanctions)
  • Acceptable Use Policies
  • Radicalisation and Extremism Policy (including PREVENT)
  • Data Protection Policy, agreements and other documentation (e.g. privacy statement and consent forms for data sharing, image use etc)

This school commits to take all reasonable precautions to ensure online safety, but recognises that incidents will occur both inside school and outside school (and that those from outside school will continue to impact on pupils/students when they come into school or during extended periods away from school. All members of the school are encouraged to report issues swiftly to allow us to deal with them quickly and sensitively through the school’s escalation processes.

Any suspected online risk or infringement should be reported to the online safety lead / designated safeguarding lead on the same day – where clearly urgent, it will be made by the end of the lesson.

Any concern/allegation about staff misuse is always referred directly to the Headteacher, unless the concern is about the Headteacher in which case the complaint is referred to the Chair of Governors and the LADO (Local Authority’s Designated Officer). Staff may also use the NSPCC Whistleblowing Helpline 0800 028 0285 (you may want to display the poster with details of this / other helplines in the staff room)

The school will actively seek support from other agencies as needed (i.e. LDST Central Team, the local authority, SIL, UK Safer Internet Centre’s Professionals’ Online Safety Helpline (POSH), NCA CEOP, Prevent Officer, Police, IWF). We will inform parents/carers of online-safety incidents involving their children, and the Police where staff or pupils/students engage in or are subject to behaviour which we consider is particularly disturbing or breaks the law (particular procedures are in place for sexting and upskirting; see section below).

The school should evaluate whether reporting procedures are adequate for any future closures/lockdowns/isolation etc and make alternative provisions in advance where these might be needed.

Actions where there are concerns about a child

The following flow chart (it cannot be edited) is taken from page 22 of Keeping Children Safe in Education 2021 as the key education safeguarding document. As outlined previously, online safety concerns are no different to any other safeguarding concern.

 

 

Sexting – sharing nudes and semi-nudes

All schools (regardless of phase) should refer to the UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS) guidance on sexting - now referred to as Sharing nudes and semi-nudes: advice for education settings  to avoid unnecessary criminalisation of children. NB - where one of the parties is over 18, this is no longer sexting but child sexual abuse.

There is a one-page overview called Sharing nudes and semi-nudes: how to respond to an incident for all staff (not just classroom-based staff) to read, in recognition of the fact that it is mostly someone other than the designated safeguarding lead (DSL) or online safety lead to first become aware of an incident, and it is vital that the correct steps are taken. Staff other than the DSL must not attempt to view, share or delete the image or ask anyone else to do so, but to go straight to the DSL.

Consider the 5 points for immediate referral at initial review:

1. The incident involves an adult

2. There is reason to believe that a child or young person has been coerced, blackmailed or groomed, or there are concerns about their capacity to consent (for example, owing to special educational needs)

3. What you know about the images or videos suggests the content depicts sexual acts which are unusual for the young person’s developmental stage, or are violent

4. The images involves sexual acts and any pupil in the images or videos is under 13

5. You have reason to believe a child or young person is at immediate risk of harm owing to the sharing of nudes and semi-nudes, for example, they are presenting as suicidal or self-harming

 

The school DSL will in turn use the full guidance document, Sharing nudes and semi-nudes – advice for educational settings to decide next steps and whether other agencies need to be involved.

 

It is important that everyone understands that whilst sexting is illegal, pupils/students can come and talk to members of staff if they have made a mistake or had a problem in this area.

The documents referenced above and materials to support teaching about sexting can be found at sexting.lgfl.net

 

Upskirting

It is important that everyone understands that upskirting (taking a photo of someone under their clothing, not necessarily a skirt) is now a criminal offence, as highlighted in Keeping Children Safe in Education and that pupils/students can come and talk to members of staff if they have made a mistake or had a problem in this area.

Bullying

Online bullying should be treated like any other form of bullying and the school bullying policy should be followed for online bullying, which may also be referred to as cyberbullying, including issues arising from banter. [ Insert link to your school bullying policy here and any key first steps you may want to outline here; it is important not to treat online bullying separately to offline bullying and to recognise that much bullying will often have both online and offline elements ]

Materials to support teaching about bullying and useful Department for Education guidance and case studies are at bullying.lgfl.net

Sexual violence and harassment

DfE guidance on sexual violence and harassment is referenced in Keeping Children Safe in Education and also a document in its own right. It would be useful for all staff to be aware of this guidance: paragraphs 45-49 cover the immediate response to a report and confidentiality which is highly relevant for all staff; the case studies section provides a helpful overview of some of the issues which may arise.

Any incident of sexual harassment or violence (online or offline) should be reported to the DSL who will follow the full guidance. Staff should work to foster a zero-tolerance culture. The guidance stresses that schools must take all forms of sexual violence and harassment seriously, explaining how it exists on a continuum and that behaviours incorrectly viewed as ‘low level’ are treated seriously and not allowed to perpetuate. The document makes specific reference to behaviours such as bra-strap flicking and the careless use of language.

Misuse of school technology (devices, systems, networks or platforms)

Clear and well communicated rules and procedures are essential to govern pupil and adult use of school networks, connections, internet connectivity and devices, cloud platforms and social media (both when on school site and outside of school).

These are defined in the relevant Acceptable Use Policy as well as in this document, for example in the sections relating to the professional and personal use of school platforms/networks/clouds, devices and other technology, as well as to BYOD (bring your own device).

Where pupils/students contravene these rules, the school behaviour policy will be applied; where staff contravene these rules, action will be taken as outlined in the staff code of conduct/handbook.

It will be necessary to reinforce these as usual at the beginning of any school year but also to remind pupils/students that the same applies for any home learning that may take place in future periods of absence/ closure/quarantine etc.

Further to these steps, the school reserves the right to withdraw – temporarily or permanently – any or all access to such technology, or the right to bring devices onto school property.

Social media incidents

See the social media section later in this document for rules and expectations of behaviour for children and adults in the Rainford C.E. Primary School community. These are also governed by school Acceptable Use Policies.

Breaches will be dealt with in line with the school behaviour policy (for pupils/students) or Safer Working Practices/Disciplinary Procedures (for staff).

Further to this, where an incident relates to an inappropriate, upsetting, violent or abusive social media post by a member of the school community, Rainford C.E. Primary School will request that the post be deleted and will expect this to be actioned promptly.

Where an offending post has been made by a third party, the school may report it to the platform it is hosted on, and may contact the Professionals’ Online Safety Helpline (run by the UK Safer Internet Centre) for support or help to accelerate this process.

 

 

 

Data protection and data security

There are references to the relationship between data protection and safeguarding in key Department for Education documents ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ and ‘Data protection: a toolkit for schools’ (August 2018), which the Designated Data Protection Lead/DPO and DSL will seek to apply. This quote from the latter document is useful for all staff – note the red and purple highlights:

GDPR does not prevent, or limit, the sharing of information for the purposes of keeping children safe. Lawful and secure information sharing between schools, Children’s Social Care, and other local agencies, is essential for keeping children safe and ensuring they get the support they need. The Data Protection Act 2018 introduced ‘safeguarding’ as a reason to be able to process sensitive, personal information, even without consent (DPA, Part 2,18; Schedule 8, 4) When Designated Safeguarding Leads in schools are considering whether, or not, to share safeguarding information (especially with other agencies) it is considered best practice for them to record who they are sharing that information with and for what reason. If they have taken a decision not to seek consent from the data subject and/or parent/carer that should also be recorded within the safeguarding file. All relevant information can be shared without consent if to gain consent would place a child at risk. Fears about sharing information must not be allowed to stand in the way of promoting the welfare and protecting the safety of children.”

All pupils/students, staff, governors, volunteers, contractors and parents are bound by the school’s data protection policy and agreements, which can be found here: https://www.rainfordcofe-pri.st-helens.sch.uk/page/data-protection-gdpr/43757

 

Rigorous controls on the LDST/school network, USO sign-on for technical services, firewalls and filtering all support data protection. The following data security products are also used to protect the integrity of data, which in turn supports data protection: Smoothwall.

The headteacher, designated data protection lead and governors work together to ensure a GDPR-compliant framework for storing data, but which ensures that child protection is always put first and data-protection processes support careful and legal sharing of information.  The school also liaises fully with the Trust’s DPO.

Staff are reminded that all safeguarding data is highly sensitive and should be treated with the strictest confidentiality at all times, and only shared via approved channels to colleagues or agencies with appropriate permissions. The use of encryption and password protection for all non-internal emails is compulsory for sharing pupil data. If this is not possible, the school’s designated data protection lead and DSL should be informed in advance.

Appropriate filtering and monitoring

Keeping Children Safe in Education obliges schools to “ensure appropriate filters and appropriate monitoring systems are in place [and] not be able to access harmful or inappropriate material [but at the same time] be careful that “over blocking” does not lead to unreasonable restrictions as to what children can be taught with regards to online teaching and safeguarding.”

At this school, the internet connection is provided by St. Helens Council

There are three types of appropriate monitoring identified by the Safer Internet Centre. These are:

  1. Physical monitoring (adult supervision in the classroom, at all times)
  2. Internet and web access
  3. Active/Pro-active technology monitoring services

 

Rainford C.E. uses all three types of monitoring.

At home, school devices are filtered and monitored when on home wifi connections.  When pupils/students log into any school system on a personal device, activity may also be monitored.

Electronic communications

Please read this section alongside references to pupil/student-staff communications in the overall school Child Protection Policy, and in conjunction with the Data Protection Policy. This section only covers electronic communications, but the same principles of transparency, appropriate conduct and audit trail apply.

Email

  • Pupils/students at this school use Microsoft 365 for all school emails
  • Staff at this school use Microsoft 365 for all school emails

Both these systems are fully auditable, trackable and managed by St. Helens Council on behalf of the school. This is for the mutual protection and privacy of all staff, pupils/students and parents, as well as to support data protection.

General principles for email use are as follows:

  • Email, Microsoft Teams, Class Dojo and Tapestry are the only means of electronic communication to be used between staff and pupils/students / staff and parents (in both directions). Use of a different platform must be approved in advance by the headteacher. Any unauthorised attempt to use a different system may be a safeguarding concern or disciplinary matter and should be notified to the DSL (if by a child) or to the Headteacher (if by a staff member).
  • Email may only be sent using the email systems above. There should be no circumstances where a private email is used; if this happens by mistake, the DSL/Headteacher/Data Protection Lead (the particular circumstances of the incident will determine whose remit this is) should be informed immediately.

 

  • Staff or pupil personal data should never be sent/shared/stored on email.
    • If data needs to be shared with external agencies the school uses encrypted email.
    • Internally, staff should use the school network, including when working from home when remote access is via. FortClient.
  • Appropriate behaviour is expected at all times, and the system should not be used to send inappropriate materials or language which is or could be construed as bullying, aggressive, rude, insulting, illegal or otherwise inappropriate, or which (for staff) might bring the school into disrepute or compromise the professionalism of staff
  • Pupils/students are not allowed to use staff email for personal use and staff are not allowed to use the e-mail system for personal use excessively and should be aware that all use is monitored, their emails may be read and the same rules of appropriate behaviour apply at all times. Emails using inappropriate language, images, malware or to adult sites may be blocked and not arrive at their intended destination.

See also the social media section of this policy.

School website

The school website is a key public-facing information portal for the school community (both existing and prospective stakeholders) with a key reputational value. The Headteacher/Principal and Governors have delegated the day-to-day responsibility of updating the content of the website to School Business Manager or the Administrative Assistant. The site is managed by / hosted by School Spider.

The DfE has determined information which must be available on a school website. LGfLLDST has a website audit document available on its website to help schools ensure that all requirements are met (Website Audit).

Where other staff submit information for the website, they are asked to remember:

  • Schools have the same duty as any person or organisation to respect and uphold copyright law – schools have been fined thousands of pounds for copyright breaches. Sources must always be credited and material only used with permission. If in doubt, check with Mrs Richardson. There are many open-access libraries of high-quality public-domain images that can be used.
  • Where pupil/student work, images or videos are published on the website, their identities are protected and full names are not published (remember also not to save images with a filename that includes a pupil’s/student’s full name). LDST consent forms should be completed and staff aware of those pupils/students for which consent to use images have not been received (if unsure, staff should seek clarification from Mrs Hirst prior to uploading information to the website).  The LDST consent form does seek consent for use of pupil names - although no member of staff will intentionally upload photos and full names occasionally the photo will include full name (eg a pupil holding a certificate, a piece of work with name on top).  This is made clear to both pupil/student and parent/carer.

Cloud platforms

The Trust has considered safeguarding and data protection before adopting LDST OneDrive as its managed platform which must be the only platform used by all staff.  

 

It is important to consider data protection before adopting a cloud platform or service and the Trust will only permit use of other platforms/services – eg Google Drive, Dropbox - under the following circumstances:

  1. the platform/service is shown to be necessary to fulfil school specific requirements that LDST OneDrive does not provide
  2. a Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) has been carried out to assess the risk 
  3. the Trust has ownership of the tenancy itself and able to manage the accounts (setup as part of an Education platform)  

If this does not happen, this means that data is being held on individual personal accounts over which the Trust has no control (even if those accounts have been registered by individuals using LDST.org.uk accounts - the actual storage location will be personal and unmanageable).  This creates a safeguarding and data protection high risk for all schools.

For online safety, basic rules of good password hygiene (“Treat your password like your toothbrush –never share it with anyone!”), expert administration and training can help to keep staff and pupils/students safe, and to avoid incidents. The Headteacher/designated data protection lead, DPO and network manager analyse and document systems and procedures before they are implemented, and regularly review them.

The following principles apply:

  • Privacy statements inform parents and children (13+ for Information Society Services otherwise 12+) when and what sort of data is stored in the cloud
  • The Headteacher, Director of Finance and Operations and the trust’s DPO work together to approve new cloud systems, and determine what may or may not be stored in them and by whom (see above). A Data Protection Impact Assessment will be completed.
  • Regular training ensures all staff understand sharing functionality and this is audited to ensure that pupil data is not shared by mistake. Open access or widely shared folders are clearly marked as such
  • Pupils/students and staff are only given access and/or sharing rights when they can demonstrate an understanding of what data may be stored and how it can be seen
  • Two-factor authentication is used for access to staff or pupil data
  • Pupil/student images/videos are only made public with parental consent or consent from the student if aged over 12 and with the relevant capacity and maturity to understand what they are agreeing to
  • Only school-approved platforms are used by pupils/students or staff to store pupil/student work
  • All stakeholders understand the difference between consumer and education products (e.g. a private Gmail account or Google Drive and those belonging to a managed educational domain)

 

Digital images and video

  • When a pupil/student joins the school, parents/carers are asked if they give consent for their child’s image to be captured in photographs or videos, for what purpose (beyond internal assessment, which does not require express consent) and for how long. Parents/carers answer as follows:

 

  • For displays around the school
  • For the newsletter
  • For use in paper-based school marketing
  • For online prospectus or websites
  • For a specific high profile image for display or publication
  • For social media

Whenever a photo or video is taken/made, the member of staff taking it will check the latest database before using it for any purpose. 

Any pupils/students shown in public facing materials are rarely identified with more than first name but if a pupil/student is holding a certificate of achievement or work they have produced it is understood (and clarified in consent forms) that these images can be used.  Photo file names/tags need to be checked to make sure they do not include full names to avoid accidentally sharing them).

All staff are governed by their contract of employment and the school’s Acceptable Use Policy, which covers the use of mobile phones/personal equipment for taking pictures of pupils/students, and where these are stored. At Rainford C.E. Primary School, no member of staff will ever use their personal phone to capture photos or videos of pupils/students.

Photos are stored on the school network in line with the retention schedule and the school Data Protection Policy.

Staff and parents are reminded about the importance of not sharing without permission, due to reasons of child protection (e.g. looked-after children often have restrictions for their own protection), data protection, religious or cultural reasons, or simply for reasons of personal privacy. Further detail on this can be found in the Data Protection Policy.

We encourage young people to think about their online reputation and digital footprint, so we should be good adult role models by not oversharing (or providing embarrassment in later life – and it is not for us to judge what is embarrassing or not).

Pupils/students are taught about how images can be manipulated in their online safety education programme and also taught to consider how to publish for a wide range of audiences which might include governors, parents or younger children

Pupils/students are advised to be very careful about placing any personal photos on social media. They are taught to understand the need to maintain privacy settings so as not to make public, personal information.

Pupils/students are taught that they should not post images or videos of others without their permission. We teach them about the risks associated with providing information with images (including the name of the file), that reveals the identity of others and their location. We teach them about the need to keep their data secure and what to do if they / or a friend are subject to bullying or abuse.

 

Social media

Rainford C.E.’s social media presence

Rainford C.E. Primary School works on the principle that if we don’t manage our social media reputation, someone else will.

Online Reputation Management (ORM) is about understanding and managing our digital footprint (everything that can be seen or read about the school online). Few parents will apply for a school place without first ‘googling’ the school, and the Ofsted pre-inspection check includes monitoring what is being said online (Mumsnet is a favourite).

Negative coverage almost always causes some level of disruption. Up to half of all cases dealt with by the Professionals Online Safety Helpline (POSH: helpline@saferinternet.org.uk) involve schools’ (and staff members’) online reputation.

Accordingly, we manage and monitor our social media footprint carefully to know what is being said about the school and to respond to criticism and praise in a fair, responsible manner.

Mrs Richardson and Mrs Hirst are responsible for managing our Twitter and Facebook Accounts. They follow the guidance in the Safer Internet Centre online-reputation management document .

Staff, pupils’/students’ and parents’ SM presence

Social media (including here all apps, sites and games that allow sharing and interaction between users) is a fact of modern life, and as a school, we accept that many parents, staff and pupils/students will use it. However, as stated in the acceptable use policies which all members of the school community sign, we expect everybody to behave in a positive manner, engaging respectfully with the school and each other on social media, in the same way as they would face to face.

This positive behaviour can be summarised as not making any posts which are or could be construed as bullying, aggressive, rude, insulting, illegal or otherwise inappropriate, or which might bring the school or (particularly for staff) teaching profession into disrepute. This applies both to public pages and to private posts, e.g. parent chats, pages or groups.

If parents have a concern about the school, we would urge them to contact us directly and in private to resolve the matter. If an issue cannot be resolved in this way, the school complaints procedure https://www.rainfordcofe-pri.st-helens.sch.uk/serve_file/3124302  should be followed. Sharing complaints on social media is unlikely to help resolve the matter, but can cause upset to staff, pupils/students and parents, also undermining staff morale and the reputation of the school is important for the pupils/students we serve).

Many social media platforms have a minimum age of 13 (note that WhatsApp is 16+), but the school on occasion deals with issues arising on social media with pupils/students under the age of 13. We ask parents to respect age ratings on social media platforms wherever possible and not encourage or condone underage use. It is worth noting that online harms regulation is likely to require more stringent age verification measures over the coming years.

However, the school has to strike a difficult balance of not encouraging underage use at the same time as needing to acknowledge reality in order to best help our pupils/students to avoid or cope with issues if they arise. Online safety lessons will look at social media and other online behaviour, how to be a good friend online and how to report bullying, misuse, intimidation or abuse. However, children will often learn most from the models of behaviour they see and experience, which will often be from adults.

Parents can best support this by talking to their children about the apps, sites and games they use (you don’t need to know them – ask your child to explain it to you), with whom, for how long, and when (late at night / in bedrooms is not helpful for a good night’s sleep and productive teaching and learning at school the next day).

The school has an official Facebook page and Twitter account and will respond to general enquiries about the school, but asks parents/carers not to use these channels to communicate about their children.

E-mail is the official electronic communication channel between parents and the school, and between staff and pupils/students. Class teachers also communicate with parents via Class Dojo or Tapestry to give brief general reminders about P.E. kits, curriculum events etc. Teachers will not use Class Dojo to respond to specific messages regarding children.  If parents have specific concerns about their child or wish to make a complaint they should contact the relevant person via email at rainfordp@ldst.org.uk.   

Pupils/students are not allowed* to be ‘friends’ with or make a friend request** to any staff, governors, volunteers and contractors or otherwise communicate via social media.

Pupils/students are discouraged from ‘following’ staff, governor, volunteer or contractor public accounts (e.g. following a staff member with a public Instagram account). However, we accept that this can be hard to control (but this highlights the need for staff to remain professional in their private lives). In the reverse situation, however, staff must not follow such public pupil/student accounts.

* Exceptions may be made, e.g. for pre-existing family links, but these must be approved by the Headteacher, and should be declared upon entry of the pupil/student or staff member to the school).

** Any attempt to do so may be a safeguarding concern or disciplinary matter and should be notified to the DSL (if by a child) or to the Headteacher (if by a staff member).

Staff are reminded that they are obliged not to bring the school or profession into disrepute and the easiest way to avoid this is to have the strictest privacy settings and avoid inappropriate sharing and oversharing online. They should never discuss the school or its stakeholders on social media and be careful that their personal opinions might not be attributed to the school, trust or local authority, bringing the school into disrepute.

The serious consequences of inappropriate behaviour on social media are underlined by the fact that during the last 5 years, there have been 263 Prohibition Orders issued by the Teacher Regulation Agency  to teaching staff that involved misuse of social media/technology.

All members of the school community are reminded that particularly in the context of social media, it is important to comply with the school policy on Digital Images and Video (See Data Protection Policy) and consent is sought before uploading photographs, videos or any other information about other people.

The statements of the Acceptable Use Policies (AUPs) which all members of the school community have signed are also relevant to social media activity, as is the school’s Data Protection Policy.

 

Device usage

Remind those with access to school devices about rules on the misuse of school technology – devices used at home should be used just like if they were in full view of a teacher or colleague. Please read the following in conjunction with acceptable use policies and the following sections of this document which all impact upon device usage: copyright, data protection, social media, misuse of technology, and digital images and video.

 

Personal devices including wearable technology and bring your own device (BYOD)

  • Pupils/students in Year 6 are allowed to bring mobile phones in to school with permission but are not allowed to use them on the school premises or grounds. Any attempt to use a phone without permission or to take illicit photographs or videos will lead to the school following sanctions as laid out in the Behaviour Policy and the withdrawal of mobile privileges. Important messages and phone calls to or from parents can be made at the school office, which will also pass on messages from parents to pupils/students in emergencies.
  • All staff who work directly with children should leave their mobile phones on silent and only use them in private staff areas during school hours. See also the Digital Images and Video section and Data Security section of the Data Protection Policy. Child/staff data should never be downloaded onto a private phone. If a staff member is expecting an important personal call when teaching or otherwise on duty, they may leave their phone with the school office to answer on their behalf or ask for the message to be left with the school office.
  • Volunteers, contractors, governors should leave their phones in their pockets and turned off. Under no circumstances should they be used in the presence of children or to take photographs or videos. If this is required (e.g. for contractors to take photos of equipment or buildings), permission of the headteacher should be sought (the headteacher may choose to delegate this) and this should be done in the presence of a member staff.
  • Parents are asked to leave their phones in their pockets and turned off when they are on site. They should ask permission before taking any photos, e.g. of displays in corridors or classrooms, and avoid capturing other children. When at school events, please refer to the Digital images and video section of the Data Protection Policy. Parents are asked not to call pupils/students on their mobile phones during the school day; urgent messages can be passed via the school office.

 

Network / internet access on school devices

  • Pupils/students are not allowed networked file access via personal devices. However, they are allowed to access the school wireless internet network for school-related internet use within the framework of the acceptable use policy. All such use is monitored.

 

  • Home devices are issued to some pupils/students. These are restricted to the apps/software installed by the school and may be used for learning and reasonable and appropriate personal use at home, but all usage may be tracked. The devices are filtered and monitored when on home Wi-Fi connections.
  • All staff who work directly with children should leave their mobile phones on silent and only use them in private staff areas during school hours. Early Years Staff should leave their phones in the Office, turned off or on silent. See also the Digital images and video section and the Data Security Section of the Data Protection Policy. Child/staff data should never be downloaded onto a private phone.

 

  • Volunteers, contractors, governors can access the guest wireless network but have no access to networked files/drives, subject to the acceptable use policy. All internet traffic is monitored.
  • Parents have no access to the school network or wireless internet on personal devices.

 

Trips / events away from school

For school trips/events away from school, teaching staff using their personal phone in an emergency will ensure that the number is hidden to avoid a parent or pupil/student accessing a member of staff’s private phone number.

Searching and confiscation

In line with the DfE guidance ‘Searching, screening and confiscation: advice for schools’ the Headteacher and staff authorised by them have a statutory power to search pupils/students property on school premises. This includes the content of mobile phones and other devices, for example as a result of a reasonable suspicion that a device contains illegal or undesirable material, including but not exclusive to sexual images, pornography, violence or bullying..

 

 

Other Documentation/Guidance Relevant to this Policy

  1. Safeguarding Incident log
  2. Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy
  3. Behaviour Policy / Anti-Bullying Policy
  4. Staff Code of Conduct / Handbook
  5. Data Protection Policy
  6. Acceptable Use Policies (AUPs) for:
    • Pupils/students
    • Staff, Volunteers Governors
    • Contractors and Visitors
    • Parents
  7. NSPCC (sexual abuse victims - schools helpline)
  8. UKCIS framework ‘Education for a Connected World – 2020 edition’
  9. Safer working practice for those working with children & young people in education (Safer Recruitment Consortium)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review Schedule

Policy Author

Data Protection Officer (DPO)

Policy Approver

Trust Corporate Services Director

Current Policy Version

2.1

Policy Effective From

1st September 2021

Policy Review Date

By 31st August 2022

 

Revision Schedule

Version

Revisions

By whom

1.0

Original document produced

DPO

2.0

New version due to significant changes throughout the policy to bring it in line with KCSIE 2020 and COVID-19 remote learning/working requirements.  DFO and IT Consultant reviewed and provided technical input.

DPO

2.1

Reviewed in line with KCSIE 2021 – updated throughout.  Sexting section and references to sexting updated  “sharing nudes and semi nudes”, reviewed with consideration to the government’s peer on peer sexual abuse investigation,  IT support provider section added, all links to other documentation/guidance updated, appendices page changed to “Other documentation/guidance relevant to this policy”, pupils changed to pupils/students throughout. 

DPO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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