Achieving their certified school accreditation is just reward for all the hard work which Abbeyfield School have put in when it comes to remaining safe online.
The school wanted a comprehensive package of online safety training, resources and learning materials to ensure that they empowered the whole school community in safeguarding children online, so becoming a member of our certified school programme was a no-brainer.
Development of Character & Designated Safeguarding Lead, Simon Down, kindly took the time to discuss in length, just how much of a positive impact National Online Safety have had on that school.
Why did you choose National Online Safety?
Going into lockdown really made us consider how we could support the community in online safety.
Within school, we’ve got very robust links to online safety in the curriculum through PSHE, assemblies and our ICT lessons.
After conducting my own research, National Online Safety was the best platform.
Could you tell me a little bit more about the package/resources you’ve purchased and how you found these?
It can often feel that schools are quite reactive when it comes to online safety incidents and we wanted, as a school, to be proactive and the Certified School package from National Online Safety really ticked all of the boxes for us.
We can reach out to staff, parents and students to give us all confidence that we are supporting online safety.
How have you found the service from National Online Safety?
When initial setup commenced, there were a few administrative things to tidy up from our end and we received feedback from your team, who were very supportive.
Things were then setup really quickly and easily.
How much of a benefit has National Online Safety’s resources been to your school?
I’m very impressed with the package and, after speaking with staff, it’s been reinforced that the content has been of very high-quality.
The video content on the webinars is really insightful and it benefits every pocket of the school.
For example, the Teaching Assistants have been really receptive to the specific package for them, because it’s given them the confidence to support our learners with additional needs.
How have you found the implementation of our lesson plans into lessons? Both from a staff and student perspective?
The lesson plans have been implemented into the curriculum from September, which will further develop the content that we already had.
What is your feedback on our weekly #WakeUpWednesday guides? How would you say they’ve added to your e-safety approach?
I was very impressed with the #WakeUpWednesday guides.
The pitch and tone within them allows for both the children and parents to pick things up and easily access the content.
The content which is included within the guides is very much in-line with current affairs. For example, we were about to look for a package on sexting and then a day later, National Online Safety released that guide on sexting.
How much of a benefit has the ability to undertake courses and training on an online platform, in your own time been?
The uptake from staff has been exceptional.
They’ve been very pleased with the opportunity to access the training from a safeguarding point of view, but with the circumstances, the ease of access has allowed for further opportunities for wider CPD training.
You recently achieved your Certified School Status – how rewarding has it been to be awarded with this?
To have the whole school community talking about online safety, it shows that the parents have also engaged – which is a big reward for them as well. It gives them the feeling that they’ve contributed something towards the school.
I’m very proud and it adds a cherry on top of the cake in respect of the whole process.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
We’ve gone into the summer feeling that we’ve been proactive and given parents and students the tools to be safe online.