During Tuesday 9 February in James Hamilton Academy, all S1 to S3 pupils participated in year group assemblies highlighting Safer Internet Day (SID). This is a global event organised by Insafe in February of each year to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially among children and young people across the world.
Each year group assembly covered a specific theme related to internet safety and this was led by our campus Police Officer, PC McGinn. The following themes were covered during each year group assembly:
S1 – How to keep safe On-Line
S2 – How to be a responsible digital citizen
S3 – How to manage your facebook account
The one-day campaign is coordinated in the UK by the Safer Internet Centre, and this celebration sees hundreds of organisations get involved to help promote the safe, responsible and positive use of digital technology for children and young people. Last year over 850 supporters helped to collectively reach 1 in 4 UK children – an incredible reach for a one-day campaign. To help make Safer Internet Day 2016 even bigger, the UK safer Internet Centre invites schools and organisations to deliver activities to support the day, and provides a range of resources to help organisation get involved.
Following the year group assemblies, pupils had further opportunities to discuss and debate on-line issues relevant to young people and parents of today during Personal and Social Education (PSE) classes. In these smaller groups the follow-up activities for pupils focused on:
S1 PSE classes –What do you know about your Digital Footprint?
S2 PSE classes – How to set up a safe Facebook profile?
S3 PSE classes - What is Sexting? Pupils discuss the myths and realities.
We anticipate that parents and carers would want to get involved with this initiative and play your part keeping young people safe on-line. There are a number of valuable resources available to parents and carers and we recommend you look at the ‘Information & Online Resources’ sheets for further advice and guidance. Specifically we would recommend the following website that has a factsheet with 8 top tips to keep young children safe:
Posters advertising Safer Internet Day were displayed across all departments in advance of this national event.
Our campus Police Officer, PC McGinn led year group assemblies from S1 to S3 discussing aspects of internet safety relevant to young people, parents and carers. From his own experience he was able to describe real life scenarios where young people had unwittingly put themselves at risk on the internet.
Following year group assemblies, pupils worked individually, in pairs and in small groups during their PSE classes to reinforce aspects of internet safety touched on in year group assemblies. PSE staff also looked in greater detail at specific aspects of on-line activities that would help keep young people safe when using the internet.