When we ask schools about their ICT priorities, e-safety consistently tops the list.  Not surprising when you consider that e-safety now forms part of Ofsted’s inspection and that one in every 12 minutes we’re awake is spent online*.

In schools, excitement about the amazing learning opportunities presented by the internet is tempered by worry about the potential dangers online.  But the answer isn't to run, hide and pretend the internet doesn't exist or ban its use in school.  Even banning social networking within schools is counterproductive; it simply leaves students even more vulnerable when they are outside the school gates.  What schools need are robust, fully embedded e-safety policies and e-safety lessons delivered within a culture where online behaviour is given the same focus as behaviour in the classroom.

The good news it that with the right policies, protection and education we can teach young people to take full advantage of the internet while staying safe, wherever and however they go online.  We can’t eliminate the risks, but we can teach children how to behave and what to do if things go wrong.

With this in mind, on Thursday 7th November RM Education kicks off a whole month of e-safety awareness activity designed to help schools get e-safety right.  Starting with the publication of a free, practical and useful guide to e-safety for schools, over the following weeks we will publish:

  • Blogs from e-safety experts
  • Case studies from schools sharing their experiences
  • Comprehensive lesson plans for KS3 and 4 with all the resources you need to deliver a highly engaging, interactive course on e-safety
  • Parent information leaflets
  • Quizzes
  • Links to quality sources of useful information
  • Competition to win E-Safe monitoring for a year.

Visit www.rm.com/esafety to find out more.

  * This is the astonishing figure published in a recent report by the Internet Advertising Bureau and PwC.
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