Stay safe online

PRIMARY SCHOOL pupils in New Mills and Hayfield have been learning how to stay safe on the internet.

Officers from New Mills and Hayfield Safer Neighbourhood Policing Team (SNT) and local Multi Agency Team (MAT) have been visiting schools to help teach youngsters the skills to stay safe online.

They have been going through the ‘Think u Know’ online safety training programme, which covers how to use chat rooms, instant messaging, email, mobile phones and social networking sites safely.

The children also learn about issues around file sharing, gaming, browsing the web and cyber bullying.

PCSO Lee Baker, of the New Mills and Hayfield SNT, who ran the sessions with Traci Good, Family Resource Worker for New Mills MAT, said: “We don’t want to stop youngsters from using the internet, or to scare people, but would encourage parents and carers to help their youngsters stay safe by getting to know a bit more about what their children do online and making sure they are aware of the potential risks.”

As part of the sessions the pupils were encouraged to follow ‘SMART’ rules:

l S is for Safe - stay safe by not giving out personal information such as your email address, phone number, home address or photos;

l M is for Meeting - never meet up with someone you have only been chatting to online and don’t know offline. Ask a parent or carer’s permission first and take them along to the meeting;

l A is for Accepting - don’t accept emails, pictures, files or texts from people you don’t know or trust. They could contain viruses or nasty messages;

l R is for Reliable – remember that information on the internet may not be true and people can lie about who they are;

l T is for Tell - tell a parent, carer or trusted adult if something makes you feel uncomfortable or worried, or if you, or someone you know, is being bullied online.

Claire Fisher, Headteacher at Hayfield Primary School, said: “We talk to our children about safe internet use on a regular basis but it was great to have Traci and Lee into school to talk to years five and six. Our children now have a much greater understanding of how to keep themselves safe online.”