The current Ofsted framework for inspection has many clear pointers to the perceived importance of ‘safeguarding’ (children in a digital world). Details can be found here.
Many schools well aware of their responsibilities have long had robust AUPs in place as well as extensive education programmes supporting the sensible and safe use and exploration of digital worlds by their children and staff.
Today the BBc reports on the government initiative ‘Click Clever, Click Safe’. This strap line is excellent but I am not so convinced about their – ‘Zip it, Block it, Flag it’ – it might sound funky but I am not sure that it really, in itself, conveys the right message. It reminds me of a paper chase or a ‘hunt the thimble’ and I have visions of children searching their way through pages that they have ‘Googled’ up so that they can, with determination – Zip, Block and Flag.
But inside this is well intentioned and excellent advice. At last the road safety idiom is coming through (many of us have been using this for some time now) with the idea that a ‘Green Cross Code’ for digital exploration is needed.
The – so sensible – Tanya Byron has it clear: “No one is saying it is scary stuff … It’s about the management of risk in the same way that we want children to understand and manage risk in the real world, in the offline world.”
Sensible schools are already well on the way to creating safe environments and confident children who will use the immense power that is available to them for their learning and enjoyment … there will always be a few abusers and a few who are not careful – we just need to do our best to educate them.
Might be worth having a look at one of the commercial ways forward with Roar Educate’s ‘US Online’.