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Online Safety Guidance for Educational Settings
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Welcome to the Kent Online Safety guidance for education settings. This page links to Kent resources, as well as national guidance to enable leaders, managers, proprietors and Designated Safeguarding Leads (DSL) within education settings develop and implement a whole setting approach towards online safety.

Additional resources including template letters for settings use with parents/carers etc. regarding specific concerns can be accessed by contacting the Education Safeguarding Adviser (Online Protection) and/or e-Safety Development Officer within the Educational Safeguarding Team.

Educational settings are encouraged to access and subscribe to the online safety blog to receive updates and information from the Education Safeguarding Team regarding online safety guidance or resources.

Online Safety Policy: Templates and Guidance
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The Kent online safety policy template is suitable for all education settings to use and adapt to create a policy appropriate to their own needs and requirements. Leaders, managers and DSLs should access the 'How to write an online safety policy' guidance document prior to using the policy template to inform decision making.

The current edition was published in September 2017.

Supporting documents

Acceptable Use Policy (AUP): Templates and Guidance
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The Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) guidance and templates contains guidance for leaders and managers to assist them in writing effective AUPs, and consider the wider implications and actions required to implement embedded AUPs that are appropriate to their communities needs and requirements.

The current edition was published in September 2017.

Acceptable Use Posters

Kent County Council and EiS have published online safety posters for use by educational settings. These posters have been created by the Kent e-Safety Strategy Group, with input from schools and settings, as well as children and young people. These posters can be used as a stimulus for discussion and may help engage with the wider community. Some settings may wish to use the posters to inspire children to create their own posters or using them as a basis for developing age and ability appropriate AUPs.

The posters are provided in PDF format and are A3 in size. To print smaller sizes, use the settings provided by your printer (i.e. for A4 reduce to 71%). If supported, set your printer to print borderless for the best presentation. Schools and settings can also access the posters as full collection, with additional printing information via the EiS website

The Use of Cameras and Images: Templates and Guidance 
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This document includes a template image use policy, along with supporting resources and frequently asked questions reagrding the use of images and cameras. The document should be accessed alongside guidance regarding Data Protection obligations.

The current edition was published in September 2016. (Note this document will be updated in Spring/Summer 2018)

Using Social Media and Technology: Guidance and Resources
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This guidance has been developed to help educational setting leaders and managers consider their strategic responsibilities and safeguarding practice when using social media.

The current edition was published in February 2017.

Online Safety Supporting Documents
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Think B4U workbook and poster - Please note this document was published in 2012 so content will be out of date

KSCB: Responding to Youth Produced Sexual Imagery ('Sexting') Guidance
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The Kent Safeguarding Children Board have published a short guide and flowchart for Kent professionals to use to respond locally to youth produced sexual imagery concerns (otherwise known as 'sexting'). This document should be used in conjunction with the UKCCIS guidance (see under 'National Guidance') to help inform the decision making of Designated Safeguarding Leads when responding to concerns.

KSCB: Safer Professional Practice with Technology 
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This document provides guidance on appropriate and safer behaviours with technology for professionals working with children and young people. It is intended to stimulate discussion within establishments to consider potential situations that may occur and to ensure all staff, whether voluntary or paid, are aware of safe, appropriate and professional behaviour. This will include online boundaries and maintaining professional relationships with children, young people and families.

The Kent Education Online Safety Strategy Group
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Many of these documents are the work of the Kent Education Safeguarding Team, alongside the Kent Education Online Safety Strategy group. The group works to support the work of the Education Safeguarding Adviser (Online Protection) and e-Safety Development Officer, and to develop local advice and guidance for educational settings. Kent Schools and settings can contact the Education Safeguarding Adviser (Online Protection) to express an interest in supporting this group.

Kent Safeguarding Children Board (KSCB) also runs an Online Safeguarding group which considers online safety throughout the wider child and adult safeguarding workforce.

National Online Safety Guidance
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UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS)

National Sexting Guidance for Schools and Colleges

  • The UKCCIS Education Group has produced advice; Sexting in schools and colleges: responding to incidents and safeguarding young people which aims to support DSLs in tackling the range of issues which these incidents present. The document includes responding to disclosures, handling devices and imagery, risk assessing situations, involving other agencies and reporting imagery to providers. It also contains information about preventative education and advice regarding working with parents.
  • UKCCIS have also published an 'Overview of Sexting Guidance' summary document which DSLs may find useful to share with staff and/or discuss on staff training. - New

DfE: 'Keeping Children Safe in Education' 2016

Keeping children safe in education (KCSIE) 2016 highlights specific statutory responsibilities for Governing bodies and leaders regarding online safety within Annex C. Key updates include:

  • The requirement for online safety to be viewed as a safeguarding issue (and therefore the responsibility of the Designated Safeguarding Lead)
  • All staff must be provided with appropriate online safety training
  • The need for school leaders to ensure there is appropriate filtering and monitoring in place
  • Policies must recognise a range of online safety issues, including cyberbullying, sexting and acceptable use of technologies
  • Governing bodies and proprietors should ensure children are taught about safeguarding, including online, through teaching and learning opportunities, as part of providing a broad and balanced curriculum.

A more detailed summary of the specific online safety points, considerations and suggested actions based on KCSIE 2016 can be found here (PDF, 483.1 KB).

On the 17 May 2018 the Department for Education (DfE) published the updated ‘Keeping children safe in education’ (KCSIE) guidance ready for implementation from the 3 September 2018. Schools and Colleges must comply with KCSIE 2016 until that date. A detailed summary of the specific online safety points within KCSIE 2018, including changes from KCSIE 2016 and action points to consider can be found here (PDF, 353.0 KB).

Additional Links

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The Common Inspection Framework and "Inspecting safeguarding in Early Years, education and skills settings" includes important information about inspecting education settings online safety provision. Full information with suggestions and recommendations regarding online safety within the Ofsted Inspecting Safeguarding framework can be found here (PDF, 458.6 KB).

Additional Links

Additional Links to National Guidance and Resources
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