I have received this from our E Safety Lead in Walsall who wished to highlight some issues that had been raised to her . Please ensure you are aware of what your children are accessing on the Internet.
You may have heard about the ‘Blue whale challenge’ from pupils in the last few days. I have had a few reports sent to me. Whilst this has been around for a while there has been a recent media article that has heightened the profile of it again. If you don’t know what it is please read this helpful article. If you have heard about this in your school you might want to share a reminder with children and parents, please remember this can take place on any platform so these reminders should be done in generic format and not mention the nature of the content or the platform that they are being circulated on.
You may want to remind parents:
1. To use parent controls
2. Listen and talk to children about what they are doing online including who they are chatting with and gaming.
3. What they should do if a child sees or is asked to do something inappropriate or harmful online. This could be by reporting the issue to the site or social media platform and if they aren’t sure what to do seek advice from school or the police.
Reminders for children:
1. Should be age appropriate messages, for example, talk to EYFS and KS1 about telling a trusted adult, talk to older children about telling a trusted adult and knowing how to report using Childline, NSPCC and on different platforms as well.
2. Try to ensure you are not encouraging children to go looking for the content or use the platform mentioned, many of the platforms don’t allow users of a young age, refer to terms and conditions for more information.
3. Tell them what to do if they do see something that upsets them or they think is bad/harmful, for example they would need to speak to a trusted adult, perhaps turn a screen off or a mobile device so you can’t see the screen but show the adult when they have told them so they can help. They can get adults to help report and block people too.
4. Remember we are preparing children to be lifelong users of the Internet and they may well come across inappropriate/ upsetting content in that time and need the skills to know what to do.
Please talk to your children about keeping safe on the Internet, see our Parent Support section which gives more information.