Aware of the risks that the online world can pose to their pupils, Devonshire Road Primary School had an ambition to empower staff, parents, carers and children through high-quality online safety training.
Exploring the wealth of award-winning online safety training and resources available, Aaron Nalton, Computing Lead, ultimately chose to opt for a Certified School Membership with National Online Safety.
The importance of online safety
Aaron revealed: "At Devonshire Road Primary School, we have quite a large range of children who come from different backgrounds."
"We aim to give all children the same opportunities in life." he affirmed.
Looking at the online world and its ever-changing nature, it was clear for Devonshire Road Primary School that they needed to support their whole community.
Aaron explained: "Every year, I think online safety becomes more important."
"There are always new apps, websites, games, everything is constantly updated and it's nearly impossible to keep up - even as a computing lead!" he exclaimed.
"Due to the pandemic, children have spent a lot more time indoors. This makes it more likely for them to engage with their friends online."
"We have had a few more incidents throughout lockdown, usually video game related." he added.
"Children may be playing games that are inappropriate, trying to navigate the social aspect of gaming too."
Discovering a world of online safety
When it came to choosing National Online Safety, Aaron revealed that the school was impressed with the wide range of resources and the cohesive nature of the package.
He explained: "Originally, I was trying to pull different resources together for online safety."
"The advice was good, but it was time consuming for me to gather the information." he commented.
"I noticed your #WakeUpWednesday guides, which are fantastic."
"When I explored the National Online Safety website, I saw the great quality and realised that I could spend less time finding the resources and training." he said.
Engaging with parents and carers
A key benefit for Devonshire Road Primary School was the Certified School programme’s role-specific training, with the ability to empower all members of the school community to keep children safe online.
Aaron said: "The platform allows us to engage with parents, which I don't think any other provider does successfully."
"I can share the resources and training with the whole school community.”
He continued: "We have had some very specific online safety incidents, with Fortnite for example, that we would have found much easier to tackle if we were with National Online Safety at the time."
"Now, we can send out the relevant resources and guidance from National Online Safety to parents and carers."
A fantastic response from the whole school community
Aaron continued: "All of our staff members have completed the Online Safety Training for Teaching Staff/Non-Teaching Staff."
"Feedback has been great. They like that the videos are short, the platform is easy to use." he said.
He commented: "They can do 20 minutes at one time, then complete the rest of the training another time when it's convenient for them."
A collective sense of pride
Aaron expressed his gratitude for the Certified School programme, highlighting the amount of knowledge, awareness and learning for all stakeholders involved.
He declared: "We're very excited about achieving the Certified School Accreditation."
"Our headteacher was thrilled." he added.
He explained: "It's a great message to send out to parents and carers, showing that we are taking online safety seriously."
"I'm hoping this will encourage the whole school community to continue engaging with the training and resources."
Aaron stated: "It's so easy to access, the resources are high-quality and very engaging."
"That's what sets it apart from any other provider."
He concluded: "It's one of the easiest platforms to access on a daily basis."