- Many online services (such as games and social media) have settings that can be used to manage contact from other users. These include privacy settings, block/mute settings and reporting tools.
- Reporting tools can be used to make a service aware of users who are behaving inappropriately. This includes any contact from a user to your child that makes them feel uncomfortable or worried, or worries you as a parent/carer.
- Depending on the nature of the contact, an online service may remove something the user has uploaded, temporarily suspend their account, or permanently bar them from using the service.
- Be proactive in your conversations with students about managing online contact – discussing the issues and providing them with support and advice to manage contact risks is always preferred to providing education in response to an incident that has already happened.
- If you are concerned about online contact by someone towards a child, then always follow the child protection procedures in your school.
- You can advise the child (or their parent/carer) to report it to the online service on which the contact took place. If appropriate, the school may be able to report the user on behalf of the child.
- If you feel that the law has been broken by someone online through their communication with a child, then you should ensure that someone responsible for child protection in your school is notified as soon as possible. The school can contact local law enforcement for further help and support.
- If one of your students is negatively affected by contact from others online, then you may play an important pastoral role in supporting them and rebuilding their confidence.