This policy outlines our purpose in providing e-mail facilities
and access to the internet at Westdale Junior School and explains how school
is seeking to avoid the potential problems that unrestricted internet access
could give rise to.
Internet access in school
Providing access to the internet in school will raise educational standards
and support the professional work of staff.
Teachers and pupils will have access to web sites world-wide (including
museums and art galleries) offering educational resources, news and current
events. There will be opportunities for discussion with experts in many
fields and to communicate and exchange information with students and others
In addition, staff will have the opportunity to access educational materials
and good curriculum practice, to communicate with the advisory and support
services, professional associations and colleagues; exchange curriculum
and administration data with the LEA and DfEE; receive up-to-date information
and participate in government initiatives such as NGfL and the Virtual
In the longer term the internet may also be used to enhance the school’s
management information and business administration systems.
Staff, including supply staff, will not be expected to take charge of
an internet activity without training. Staff should be given opportunities
to discuss the issues and develop good teaching strategies. All staff (including
teachers, supply staff and classroom assistants) and any other adults involved
in supervising children accessing the internet, will be provided with the
School Internet Access Policy, and will have its importance explained to
Parents' attention will be drawn to the Policy by letter
in the first instance and, thereafter, in our school prospectus. Our school
Internet Access Policy will be available for parents and others to read
Ensuring internet access is appropriate and safe
The internet is a relatively new communications medium and is freely available
to any person wishing to send e-mail or publish a web site. In common with
other media such as magazines, books and video, some material available
on the internet is unsuitable for pupils. Pupils in school are unlikely
to see inappropriate content in books due to selection by publisher and
teacher and the school will take every practical measure to ensure that
children do not encounter upsetting, offensive or otherwise inappropriate
material on the internet. The following key measures have been adopted
to help ensure that our pupils are not exposed to unsuitable material:
our internet access is purchased from Notts. County Council which provides
a service designed for pupils including a "firewall" filtering system intended
to prevent access to material inappropriate for children;
children using the internet will normally be working in the classroom,
during lesson time and will be supervised by an adult (usually the class
teacher) at all times;
staff will check that the sites pre-selected for pupil use are appropriate
to the age and maturity of pupils;
staff will be particularly vigilant when pupils are undertaking their own
search and will check that the children are following the agreed search
pupils will be taught to use e-mail and the internet responsibly in order
to reduce the risk to themselves and others;
the IT co-ordinator will monitor the effectiveness of internet access strategies;
the IT co-ordinator will ensure that occasional checks are made on files
to monitor compliance with the school's Internet Access Policy;
the headteacher will ensure that the policy is implemented effectively;
methods to quantify and minimise the risk of pupils being exposed to inappropriate
material will be reviewed in consultation with colleagues from other schools
and advise from the LEA, our Internet Service Provider and the DfEE.
It is the experience of other schools that the above measures have been
highly effective. However, due to the international scale and linked nature
of information available via the internet, it is not possible to guarantee
that particular types of material will never appear on a computer screen.
the school nor Notts. County Council can accept liability for the material
accessed, or any consequences thereof.
A most important element of our Rules of Responsible
Internet Use is that pupils will be taught to tell a teacher immediately
if they encounter any material that makes them feel uncomfortable.
If there is an incident in which a pupil is exposed to offensive or
upsetting material the school will wish to respond to the situation quickly
and on a number of levels. Responsibility for handing incidents involving
children will be taken by GJ (IT Co-ordinator) and MH (Child Protection)
in consultation with JS (Head Teacher) and the pupil's class teacher. All
the teaching staff will be made aware of the incident in Pupil Awareness
at a Staff Meeting if appropriate.
If one or more pupils discover (view) inappropriate material our first
priority will be to give them appropriate support. The pupil's parents/carers
will be informed and given an explanation of the course of action the school
has taken. The school aims to work with parents/carers and pupils to resolve
If staff or pupils discover unsuitable sites the IT co-ordinator will be
informed. The IT co-ordinator will report the URL (address) and content
to the Internet Service Provider and the LEA; if it is thought that the
material is illegal, after consultation with the ISP and LEA, the site
will be referred to the Internet Watch Foundation and the police.
Pupils are expected to play their part in reducing the risk of viewing
inappropriate material by obeying the Rules of
Responsible Internet Use which have been designed to help protect them
from exposure to internet sites carrying offensive material. If pupils
abuse the privileges of access to the internet or use of e-mail facilities
by failing to follow the rules they have been taught or failing to follow
the agreed search plan when given the privilege of undertaking their own
internet search, then sanctions consistent with our School Behaviour Policy
will be applied. This may involve informing the parents/carers. Teachers
may also consider whether access to the internet may be denied for a period.
Maintaining the security of the school ICT network
We are aware that connection to the internet significantly increases the
risk that a computer or a computer network may be infected by a virus or
accessed by unauthorised persons.
The IT co-ordinator will up-date virus protection regularly, will keep
up-to-date with IT news developments and work with the LEA and Internet
Service Provider to ensure system security strategies to protect the integrity
of the network are reviewed regularly and improved as and when necessary.
Using the internet to enhance learning
Pupils will learn how to use a web browser. Older pupils will be taught
to use suitable web search engines. Staff and pupils will begin to use
the internet to find and evaluate information. Access to the internet will
become a planned part of the curriculum that will enrich and extend learning
activities and will be integrated into the class schemes of work.
As in other areas of their work, we recognise that pupils learn most
effectively when they are given clear objectives for internet use.
Different ways of accessing information from the internet will be used
depending upon the nature of the material being accessed and the age of
access to the internet may be by teacher (or sometimes other-adult) demonstration;
pupils may access teacher-prepared materials, rather than the open internet;
pupils may be given a suitable web page or a single web site to access;
pupils may be provided with lists of relevant and suitable web sites which
they may access;
older, more experienced, pupils may be allowed to undertake their own internet
search having agreed a search plan with their teacher; pupils will be expected
to observe the Rules of Responsible Internet Use and will be informed that
checks can and will be made on files held on the system and the sites they
Pupils accessing the internet will be supervised by an adult, normally
their teacher, at all times. They will only be allowed to use the internet
once they have been taught the Rules of Responsible
Internet Use and the reasons for these rules. Teachers will endeavour
to ensure that these rules remain uppermost in the children's minds as
they monitor the children using the internet.
Using information from the internet
We believe that, in order to use information from the internet effectively,
it is important for pupils to develop an understanding of the nature of
the internet and the information available on it. In particular, they should
know that, unlike the school library for example, most of the information
on the internet is intended for an adult audience, much of the information
on the internet is not properly audited/edited and most of it is copyright.
pupils will be taught to expect a wider range of content, both in level
and in audience, than is found in the school library or on TV;
teachers will ensure that pupils are aware of the need to validate information
whenever possible before accepting it as true, and understand that this
is even more important when considering information from the internet (as
a non-moderated medium);
when copying materials from the Web, pupils will be taught to observe copyright;
pupils will be made aware that the writer of an e-mail or the author of
a web page may not be the person claimed.
Pupils will learn how to use an e-mail application and be taught e-mail
conventions. Staff and pupils will begin to use e-mail to communicate with
others, to request information and to share information.
It is important that communications with persons and organisations are
properly managed to ensure appropriate educational use and that the good
name of the school is maintained. Therefore:
teachers will endeavour to ensure that these rules remain uppermost in
the children's minds as they monitor children using e-mail;
pupils may send e-mail as part of planned lessons but will not be given
individual e-mail accounts at present;
in-coming e-mail to pupils will not be regarded as private;
children will have the e-mail messages they compose checked by a member
of staff before sending them;
the forwarding of chain letters will not be permitted;
pupils will not be permitted to use e-mail at school to arrange to
meet someone outside school hours.
Westdale Junior School web site
Our school web site is intended to:
provide accurate, up-to-date information about our school;
enable pupils to publish work to a high standard, for a very wide audience
including pupils, parents, staff, governors, members of the local community
celebrate good work;
provide pupils with the opportunity to publish their work on the internet;
promote the school.
In the future it may be used to publish resources for projects or homework.
All classes may provide work for publication on the school web site.
Class teachers will be responsible for ensuring that the content of the
pupils' work is accurate and the quality of presentation is maintained.
All material must be the author's own work, crediting other work included
and stating clearly that author's identity and/or status. The IT co-ordinator
is responsible for up-loading pages to the school web site, ensuring that
the links work and are up-to-date, and that the site meets the requirements
of the site host.
The point of contact on the web site will be the school address, telephone
number and e-mail address. We do not publish pupils’ full names or photographs
that identify individuals on our web pages. Home information or individual
e-mail identities will not be published. Staff will be identified by their
title and surname unless they request otherwise. Permission will be sought
from other individuals before they are referred to by name on any pages
we publish on our web site.
Parents will be informed in our school prospectus that pupils are provided
with supervised internet access as part of their lessons. We will keep
parents in touch with future ICT developments by letter and newsletter.
Internet use in pupils' homes is rapidly increasing and some parents
may be grateful for any advice/guidance that school can offer – especially
with regard to safe access for children. The IT co-ordinator is willing
to offer advice and suggest alternative sources of advice on the understanding
that neither he/she, the school nor the LEA can be held responsible for
the consequences of such advice. Further:
school guidelines on issues such as safe internet use will be made available
to parents together with printed information and internet sites providing
information for parents about safe access for children;
the IT co-ordinator will maintain a stock of relevant leaflets from organisations
such as BECTa, PIN, and NCH Action for Children;
the IT co-ordinator will offer demonstrations/practical IT sessions for
parents during 1999/2000 to inform parents and encourage a partnership
in the future it is possible that suitable educational and leisure activities
that make responsible use of the internet will be developed with parents.
As noted above, it is not possible to be certain of the originator of an
e-mail message, and for this reason the school is unable to accept an e-mail
as parental authorisation of a pupil absence.
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