Is your school Ofsted-ready when it comes to e-safety?
E-safety is a complex area: it touches on many other school priorities such as safeguarding, teaching and learning and information governance.
To be judged outstanding by Ofsted, schools should continuously be developing their e-safety curriculum, working in partnership with parents on e-safety, delivering up-to-date staff training and regularly reviewing and evaluating policies in the light of new technology.
If that sounds like a lot to keep on top of, booking a complimentary e-safety briefing from Concero could help your school on its journey to developing best-practice.
An ongoing partnership with parents
This is exactly what St Mary’s CE Primary School, Albrighton, did, calling in the e-safety specialists at Concero to deliver a presentation for parents.
‘We focused on children’s use of social media, such as Snapchat, Instagram and What’s App, and multiplayer gaming,’ notes Alan Foster, Head of Learning Technologies at Concero. ‘We also covered issues like bullying, inappropriate content and the use of mobile phones, and explained to parents what they can do to protect their child at home.’
‘The feedback from parents was that the session was extremely useful and had been an eye opener,’ adds St Mary’s Deputy Headteacher, Colin Mahy. ‘They said they were going to review the way the internet was used at home.’
Lightening the load and shaping best practice
Concero went on to deliver e-safety training for the school’s staff. ‘We looked at safeguarding issues and how best to respond to e-safety incidents in school,’ Concero’s Alan explains. ‘Ofsted recommendations play a big part in shaping the advice that we give, and we can suggest to schools what they could be doing to ensure they follow these guidelines.’
Support for teachers doesn’t end when the e-safety session does. Concero has advised the school on the development of its e-safety curriculum and pulls together the best online resources for teachers to use in class.
‘The training and support has improved our staff’s confidence in spotting symptoms that indicate there might be cause for concern, and has helped secure best practice,’ notes Mr Mahy. ‘Our students are now safer online because of the rigorous scheme of work and our knowledgeable teaching staff.’
Achieving an Ofsted-recommended e-safety accreditation
As Ofsted encourages schools to gain accreditation as part of their work on e-safety, St Mary’s Headteacher, Amanda Skidmore, and the school’s ICT Subject Leader also attended EPICT training run by Concero.
‘The training day enhanced our knowledge of cyberbullying, sexting and online grooming and our knowledge of the signs that this is happening and how to deal with it,’ says Mrs Skidmore. ‘It showed how to minimise the risks online but also highlighted the benefits of using technology.’ Concero provided support for the follow-up assignments that needed to be completed to gain accreditation.
‘The EPICT accreditation has given the Headteacher and ICT subject leader the increased skills and knowledge to manage e-safety effectively on a day-to-day basis and disseminate this to pupils, staff, governors and parents,’ says Mr Mahy.
He adds that the school continues to value its working relationship with its trusted IT partner: ‘The Concero staff are extremely friendly and helpful and have the best interests of the school at heart. If we need any support at all, they are there to help. It was definitely in St Mary’s best interests to work with Concero.’
For a helping hand developing your school’s e-safety strategy, call 0333 111 0004 or visit concerouk.com today.