Do you ever feel that your children know more about online technologies than you do?
You’re not alone. The Internet and online technologies are an important part of children’s lives at home and school, providing great opportunities for learning, communicating, playing and creating. As we know, these technologies create huge opportunities for us all; however, they can sometimes be a bit overwhelming, and present challenges to keeping your family safe online.
Safer Internet Day (SID) is an annual event to promote the safe and responsible use of technology among children and young people. The focus of SID 2012 is ‘connecting generations’. It aims to encourage families to explore online technologies together. SID 2012 will be taking place on Tuesday 7th February with activities across the UK and beyond which we would like you to be a part of.
The Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) is the UK’s national centre dedicated to protecting children from harm both online and offline. CEOP’s Thinkuknow education initiative aims to empower children and young people to enjoy online technologies safely. Each year CEOP celebrates SID to highlight the importance of educating children and young people about their online safety.
It is just as important to be involved in your children’s’ life online, than it is offline. Just as you would ask about their friends at school or the clubs they go to, you should use this approach with the people they meet online – ask the same questions and show the same interest.
To help get you started, CEOP are releasing the ‘Parents’ and Carers’ Guide to the Internet’ – a short, entertaining TV-style programme looking at what it’s like to bring up children in the online world. The programme will help you to:
- stay up-to-date with the technology your children are using;
- understand steps you can take to keep your children safe online; and
- know what action to take and where to seek further support if things go wrong.
Visit www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents on Tuesday 7th February. From this day, you will be able to view the ‘Parents’ and Carers’ Guide to the Internet’ and have access to information and guidance on how to keep your family safe online.
As you are aware Priory has been inspected by Ofsted over the past couple of days. The outcome has to remain confidential until the final report is moderated and published which should be within the next 15 days.
We are all very proud of Priory School and I was particularly proud of our pupils over the last couple of days. The inspectors think that more than half of our lessons are good or outstanding and that behaviour in them helps everyone to learn. They said our pupils are courteous and respectful of each other and of visitors. They recognise how hard the teachers are working to make sure they make good progress. They also think behaviour around the site is very sensible. For example, they were impressed to see a group of older pupils step in to stop someone getting into trouble when they were angry at break. This shows that understanding of responsibilities is very good.
The inspectors also think that the things I have done since becoming headteacher are taking the school in the right direction and that our teachers and support staff are more than capable of getting us to be an outstanding school.
Like any good teacher, the team has set us some very challenging targets to make sure that all our pupils make the very best progress. I will tell you more about this when the report is published in a couple of weeks.
Priory School is being inspected by a team of Ofsted inspectors on Wednesday/Thursday 18/19 January
Pupils rate Priory higher than ever
Following our recent survey of pupils’ attitudes to the school, I am pleased to note that pupils rate the ways they are being taught, how they are being treated and the ways in which they are learning. They think staff enjoy teaching them much more, that the lessons are more interesting and that the work is more stimulating. They think staff are trying harder to get the best out of them and they are doing more homework. They think their school work is more important.
Other important changes which come through the survey include:
- Pupils feel they are listened to more
- Homework is regularly marked
- More of them feel they are working harder
- Staff are focusing more on discussing progress with pupils
- They think this is a better school
- They are more motivated to come to school
- They respect staff more
- They are treated more fairly
- A higher proportion than nationally feel the school rules are fair and reasonable (new question)
- A wider range of teaching methods are being used
- They are praised more
- The lowest ever proportion of pupils saying that lessons are frequently or often disrupted
- Things are explained more clearly
- They feel they are learning more
- A higher proportion than ever before say they get well with most of their teachers
I am thrilled that pupils have rated the school more highly and that they have noticed a real impact through the changes we have worked hard to put in place. Of course, this is over only two terms, so I look forward to even more impressive ratings next year with exam results to follow!
Many parents and staff filled in a similar questionnaire. I will be sharing the results of these next week.
by Lars Plougmann
On Tuesday 7th February CEOP will be launching the ‘Parents’ Guide to the Internet’. This will be a TV-style programme available to view on the CEOP site. The programme will take an entertaining and light-hearted look at what it’s like to bring up children in the online world – featuring practical tips and amusing clips from some surprising sources! Tune in to learn more about what your child is up to online and how you can support them.