Online Safety Guidance for Educational Settings
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.
- Other content:
Online Safety Policy: Templates and Guidance
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.
- 'How to write an Online Safety Policy: Guidance for Leaders, Managers and Designated Safeguarding Leads' (PDF, 719.5 KB) - Updated May 2018
- Online Safety Policy Template (DOCX, 131.1 KB) - Updated May 2018
- Responding to an Online Safety Concern Flowchart (DOCX, 125.5 KB) - New
- Schools Online Safety Self-Evaluation Tool (DOCX, 31.0 KB) - New
- Early Years Settings Online Safety Self-Evaluation Tool (DOCX, 33.2 KB) - New
Acceptable Use Policy (AUP): Templates and Guidance
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 Policy Template and Guidance Document (PDF, 815.5 KB) - Updated May 2018
- Acceptable Use Policy Templates (DOC, 1011.5 KB) - Updated May 2018
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.
- Infant/Early Years Poster (3-6) (PDF, 137.4 KB)
- Junior/KS2 Poster (7-11) (PDF, 115.2 KB)
- Secondary Poster (11-18) (PDF, 108.6 KB)
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
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)
- The Use of Cameras and Images within Education Settings Policy Template and Guidance (PDF, 461.5 KB) - Updated May 2018
- The Use of Cameras and Images within Education Settings Policy Templates only (DOCX, 179.1 KB) - Updated May 2018
Using Social Media and Technology: Guidance and Resources
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.
- Using Social Media in Education Settings (February 2017) - core guidance (PDF, 916.9 KB)
- Social Media FAQs for Educational Setting Leaders (PDF, 266.6 KB)
- Using Social Media in Education Settings Annex Resources (DOCX, 183.2 KB)
- What to consider when setting up an Official Facebook Page (PDF, 232.1 KB)
- What to consider when setting up an Official Facebook Group (PDF, 267.0 KB)
- What to consider when setting up an Official Twitter Account (PDF, 181.7 KB)
- What to consider when setting up an Official YouTube Channel (PDF, 157.0 KB)
Online Safety Supporting Documents
- Dealing with Complaints on Social media by parents/carers: Guidance for Headteachers and Managers (PDF, 523.9 KB) September 2017 (PDF) - New
- Dealing with Complaints on Social media by parents/carers: Guidance for Headteachers and Managers (DOCX, 636.2 KB) September 2017 (Word) - New
- Online Safety Practice Considerations for DSLs (PDF, 97.8 KB) September 2017 - New
- Role of the Online Safety Lead (PDF, 133.0 KB) September 2017 - New
- Engaging Families in Online Safety (PDF, 493.6 KB) September 2017 - New
- Engaging parents/carers in children's use of apps (PDF, 236.0 KB) September 2017 - New
- Online Safety Alerts (PDF, 277.0 KB) September 2017 - New
- Online Safety for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) (PDF, 266.2 KB) September 2017 - New
- KSCB and Trading Standards Leaflet for Parents/Carers (PDF, 221.6 KB) August 2015
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
KSCB: Safer Professional Practice with Technology
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
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
UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS)
- UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS)
- 'Education for a Connected World framework' - New. The framework describes the digital knowledge and skills that children and young people should have the opportunity to develop at different ages and stages of their lives.
- Online safety in schools and colleges: Questions from the Governing Board - questions to help governing boards support their school leaders to keep children safe online.
- Using External Visitors to Support Online Safety Education Draft document to help educational settings ensure that online safety education sessions delivered by external visitors are effective.
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).
- DfE Preventing and Tackling Bullying - July 2017
- DfE Cloud software services and the Data Protection Act - October 2014
- What Schools must publish online September 2014
- DfE guidance on the 'Principles of e-Safety' (Archived content)
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).
- Ofsted reports in Computing and materials for schools
- The safe use of new technologies - Ofsted 2012
- Inspecting e-Safety - Ofsted (PDF, 382.1 KB) Updated April 2014 (Please note this document is no longer available on the Ofsted website and is published here only to highlight good practice)
- Online Safety within the Common Inspection Framework
- Online Safety within the Early Years Inspection handbook
- Online Safety within the School Inspection Handbook
- Online Safety within the Non-association independent school inspection handbook
- Online Safety within the Further education and skills inspection handbook