Social Networking & Mobile Phone Policy for Students

The school is aware and acknowledges that increasing numbers of adults and children are using social networking sites.

The widespread availability and use of social networking application bring opportunities to understand, engage and communicate with audiences in new ways. It is important that we are able to use these technologies and services effectively and flexibly. However, it is also important to ensure that we balance this with our reputation.

This policy and associated guidance is to protect students and advise school leadership on how to deal with potential inappropriate use of social networking sites.

  • No student under 13 should be accessing social networking sites. This is the guidance from both Facebook and MSN. There is a mechanism on Facebook where students can be reported via the Help screen; at the time of time of writing this and the direct link for this is: http://www.facebook.com/help/contact.php?show_form=underage
  • No student may access social networking sites during the school working day
  • School rules on mobiles and other devices are clear. These items are not to be seen or heard at any time on school premises. Failure to follow this guidance will result in the confiscation of the device.

If parents/carers feel a phone is necessary for journeys to school and for after school contact it should be turned off and kept in the student’s bag or locker whilst on school premises. Any student who does not do so may have their phone confiscated and a parent will have to collect it from the School Office. Any student found to be taking photos/videos in school will have to remove them from their social networking site and will be sanctioned in line with school policy.

  • No student should attempt to join a staff member’s areas on networking sites. If students attempt to do this, the member of staff is to inform the Principal. Parents will be informed if this happens
  • No school computers are to be used to access social networking sites at any time of day.
  • Any attempts to breach firewalls will result in a ban from using school ICT equipment other than with close supervision
  • Please report any improper contact or cyber bullying to your mentor in confidence as soon as it happens.
  • We have a zero tolerance to cyber bullying

School rules clearly state that no photos/video clips are allowed to be taken in school, unless directly related to a topic of study and officially sanctioned by the school. The IES Breckland ICT User Agreement which is to be signed by all Students and Parent’s/Carer’s makes this very clear. This rule is in place to protect all those who attend IES Breckland, both students and staff.

The school’s duty is to try to protect young people from the dangers of society, including the inappropriate use of technology. The school will also teach students that they have a key role to play in protecting themselves and others by seriously considering about the information they share. Within school we will be reminding students of all these points through assemblies and ICT lessons, but it would be appreciated if you could talk to your child about these important issues to ensure they fully understand how to keep safe and how to respect the privacy of others: many parents may state that they do not want their child photographed in school. It is strongly recommended that parents and carers look at their child’s social networking site on a regular basis to ensure that it is being used wisely. Further information or advice on internet safety is available from www.childnet.com.

Policy Adopted September 2012