Virtual Online Learning/Keeping children Safe!
This year we have all faced significant challenges brought about by the global outbreak of coronavirus
(COVID-19). Now, more than ever before, we are relying on technology to stay connected. With this increased use of technology in our daily lives, there are undoubtedly greater risks presented.
It has never been more important to equip our children and young people with the knowledge, skills and resilience to navigate the online world. Protecting children and young people from harmful activity online is critical. It is therefore vital that we provide an education system that enables our learners to embrace technology and contribute positively online.
For many years we have recognised the importance of online safety. However in this third decade of the twenty-first century, learning how to be safe from harm online has become more complex, and the term ‘safe’ is no longer sufficient. We must support our children in becoming safe and responsible online and ultimately, digitally resilient.
We live in a world where misinformation, disinformation and bots pose a significant risk, not just to our safety, but also to our fundamental decision-making. The influence of misinformation and disinformation is vast, and research has demonstrated that disinformation spreads significantly faster, deeper and more broadly than true information. It’s essential we teach our children and young people to become critical thinkers and to always evaluate and check information before they trust it, act on it or share it further.
It’s also undoubtedly true that the twenty-first century’s most valuable commodity is data and we must accept that cyber security is no longer just the business of major corporate firms. It’s essential for us to all protect our devices and our data to reduce the chances of becoming a victim of cybercrime. These habits start young and are grounded in the very basic habits of cyber hygiene such as strong passwords and understanding the kinds of risks to avoid.
We are very fortunate here in OLSK to have a monitoring system that keeps us safe, through our ICT provider, DGFL (Dudley Grid for Learning) This allows all who are in our building to keep safe whilst accessing online materials. DGFL has been designed to support the digital resilience of children and young people, their families, practitioners and professionals and the wider school community.