Using Whatsapp and other online messaging apps/websites

I am writing another article this week to remind parents about the importance of monitoring their children’s internet and mobile phone use to ensure that the children are sticking to the rules to keep themselves safe and to use the platforms responsibly.

I received a few emails from parents this week who had followed the school’s advice when they noticed some inappropriate messaging during an online gaming session. We advise parents to:

  1. Firstly  screen capture any inappropriate inter actions or conversations (photograph the screen with your mobile phone if necessary)
  2. Then block and report the child sending the inappropriate messages.
  3. Finally, send a copy of the offending photographs to school

I will always inform the parents of the children sending the messages and the parents of the other children involved in the online gaming activity so that everyone knows what is going on.

Although there is nothing that I can really do to prevent children going online and behaving inappropriately, I will do everything I can to make sure that the children understand that they are responsible for any comments made on their phone/online accounts and that there are consequences for their online behaviour.

Similarly, I have had to deal with a few incidents that have occurred out of school where children have been sharing photographs through Whatsapp, then have then been taken off this platform and used on a public social media site without the permission of the children in the photo, which caused some upset and embarrassment.

Again, if I hear about them, I will always inform parents. We are trying to encourage children not to say or do anything in a call or message that they would say to the other person’s face in front of their parents. Below I have attached a parent information sheet from https://nationalonlinesafety.com/guides.

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