Personal and Online Safety
As part of our pastoral care, we treat personal safety with high importance. Personal safety comprises e-safety, bullying and drugs (including alcohol).
Personal Safety Evening for Parents and Carers 2017
A Personal Safety Evening was held on Thursday 19 October 2017 for parents of students in Years 7 and 8. PC Bissett and staff gave short presentations to parents on aspects of personal safety involving their children, including internet safety, inappropriate use of Facebook etc. The school's protection measures were also explained as well as the different aspects of the PSHE curriculum that help inform and protect students.
Notice about Snapchat
Snapchat has just launched another new feature on their popular social media app.
'Snap Maps' puts users and their snaps onto a map so friends and other Snapchatters can see where they are and what they are doing.
It has raised a lot of concerns amongst child safety experts.
The NSPCC advise that young people should set Snapchat to 'ghost mode' which means that no one can see your location.
Notice about smartphone apps for Parents
You may have seen stories about smartphone apps being used to target children and allowing strangers to contact them. These incidents have highlighted a number of safeguarding issues raised recently about smartphone ‘apps’ including Live.ly, ooVoo, and music.ly amongst others. These apps are supposed to only be able to access contacts on the user’s phones, but it appears that quite quickly unknown individuals are able to join group chats. Therefore, these apps are not safe for children to use as there is a significant risk of inappropriate contact by unknown individuals.
We advise parents to ensure that their children do not have access to such apps on their phone and to check that all appropriate privacy settings are switched on, to make sure that children are protected when using any internet site. If a child experiences or expresses concerns about online activity, it must be reported to the police using 101 and https://ceop.police.uk/ceop-reporting/. Wherever possible, a screen shot or a mobile phone picture of the concern should be taken for reporting purposes
Safer Schools Officer
PC Sally Bisset is our Safer Schools Officer. She can always be contacted through school, via Mrs Davis firstname.lastname@example.org
What is a Safer Schools Partnership?
The Safer Schools Partnership (SSP) in Leeds is a partnership between a school and the Police, and also includes two main agencies; the Youth Offending Service and Children’s Services. All Leeds schools have a Police Officer attached to them, not because there are specific problems or concerns or that there are many issues in those schools, but used as a means of early intervention and to assist with preventative measures.
What are the aims of a Safer School Partnership?
- To reduce the prevalence of crime, anti-social behaviour and victimisation amongst young people and to reduce the number of incidents and crimes in schools and their wider communities.
- To provide a safe and secure school community which enhances the learning environment.
- To engage young people, challenge unacceptable behaviour, and help them develop a respect for themselves and their community
- To ensure that young people remain in education, actively learning, healthy and achieving their full potential.
- Wherever possible to keep young people out of the Youth Justice System, to avoid them getting a police record which could affect the rest of their lives.
- Make sure they are aware of the consequences of breaking the law by doing educational inputs across the years on subjects such as Online bullying, Drugs, Sexting, Anti-Social Behaviour, Alcohol. We also cover issues regarding personal safety such as internet and road safety.
What are the benefits of a Safe Schools Officer?
- Reduced rates of truancy and exclusions
- Reduction in offending and anti-social behaviour
- Improvements in educational attainment
- Multi-agency problem solving
- Improved partnerships working
- Improved pupil safety, safer working environment and safer communities
- Improved relations between young people and the police
- Increase in the respect for young people and the respect that they have for their fellow students and the wider community
- Enhance partner performance against targets
Can we speak to your child without you being present?
Yes we can – we are part of the school staff and will speak to and advise any pupil about various issues and incidents. If the pupil is the subject of a formal criminal investigation then they would have to be interviewed with a parent/carer present.
- CEOP (Child Exploitation & Online Protection Centre)
- OpenDNS FamilyShield (free)
- BT Parental Controls
- Think U Know Guide to internet safety and safe surfing for young people
- Digizen Internet Social Networking advice and guidance for young people, parents and teachers.
- Internet Matters
- Internet Security leaflet for Parents and Carers (PDF)
- Social Media leaflet for Parents and Carer (PDF)
- Letter from Safer Leeds with guidance and advice for Parents on Pokemon Go (PDF)
Childline or telephone 0800 111
We have various Childline framed posters around school (in the Study Centre H22 and outside the Learning Resource Centre).
A prominent link to Childline permanently appears as a banner on our stmarysmenston.org website homepage.