Supporting Students – SEND

Online Safety for Children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)

Technology is an important feature of a young person’s life. The internet is an influential part of a young person’s life. It is a tool used to engage in all aspects of social lives and these platforms and methods for young people to communicate are constantly evolving. Technology and the internet are also fundamental features of school life and learning at home. Due to the increased opportunities and importance to their lives young people are spending more time online.

As young people spend more time online there is an increased risk that they may place themselves in danger, it’s crucial that young people understand how to protect themselves from any risks associated with technology and the internet.

The internet can feel like a safe place for all young people to communicate and socialise. Unfortunately, some children with SEND are increasingly more likely than their peers to be exposed to new risks associated with e-safety such as cyberbullying, grooming and exploitation.

It is important that families and schools empower children with SEND to identify the related risks and develop a resilience to use technology safely.

Five basic safety rules all young people should know:

• Keep all of your accounts private and never let anybody know your password.

• Check the privacy settings of all sites and apps you use.

• Don’t post any personal information online.

• NEVER speak to anyone you do not know online or accept gifts from people you don’t know.

• If you are unsure, need advice or support – speak to a parent/ carer or teacher.

All children need constant reminding of safety rules. Young people with SEND must understand why clear boundaries and expectations for appropriate internet use are needed and the consequences which may happen if they don’t respect them. Some young people with SEND may intentionally disregard boundaries and the rules so it’s important that they are reminded of possible repercussions.

Talking regularly with young people about the rules and repercussions is important. Some may need continual reminding that the internet can have dangerous consequences and e-safety rules are important for a reason: to keep children safe.

School, parents and carers have a crucial role in supporting young people with staying safe online. Parents and carers of children with SEND may require more help and advice. The aim of the school’s e-safety webpage is to inform both parents and carers of the importance of this increasingly important issue.

For any queries or to discuss this further please contact school.
Key contacts:
Designated Safeguarding Lead – Miss C Franklin
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead – Miss B Parry
SEND Lead – Mrs S Crofts and Mrs J Buckley Dibben

More advice and support can be found below:

Watch John’s e-safety story on BBC Bitesize
eSafety – KS3 PSHE and Citizenship – BBC Bitesize

 

This CBBC Newsround short film is an engaging and informative e-safety story which can be watched by parents, carers and young people together.
Internet safety: Caught in the Web – a Newsround Special – CBBC Newsround

 

Learning Disabilities, Autism and Internet Safety: A Guide for Parents – Mencap

 

 

 

A guide from Childnet International with links to advice for supporting young people with SEND online.
Supporting young people with SEND online – Childnet