Loreto High School, Beaufort, possesses a Broadband Internet connection that is networked to all the computers in the Computer Room. The facility will be used in various classes and at lunchtime (under supervision) as an educational resource by pupils. It is an educational resource of considerable significance and value but one that also has inherent dangers.
In the interests of ensuring as safe an environment as possible for pupils and staff, this policy is being written.
Rules For Pupils
The following rules are provided for your own protection and to ensure the best possible use of our facilities.
- The Internet is provided as an educational resource and is to be used for that purpose only. You should be conscious that use of the Internet is expensive and try to make the best of your time on-line.
- You may not access the Internet online without the permission of a teacher who will connect it for you and who remains present during the entire session.
- You may not participate in chat room sessions without the express permission of a teacher who is present for the entire session and who is made aware of the nature of the chat.
- You may not open e-mail attachments from unsolicited or unknown sources. Please ask a teacher to open them for you.
- You may not register or sign visitor’s books at Web sites without permission.
- You may not give personal details, about yourself or anybody else, such as name, address, telephone number over the Internet without the permission of a teacher who has monitored what you are doing.
- You should never arrange to meet anyone through the Internet without obtaining permission from your parents.
- Any encounter with material on the Internet which makes you feel uncomfortable or threatened or which you feel undesirable or unsafe should be reported immediately to the teacher present.
- If you breach these regulations or attempt to access material which is considered undesirable or which is illegal (e.g. pornography, subversive material, drug abuse information, etc) you may experience serious consequences, which could include withdrawal of your right to use the ICT facilities, detention, suspension or expulsion from the school, depending on the nature of the breach.
- You should be aware that your use of the Internet is recorded and can be easily monitored and traced.
- By entering the computer room, you are automatically agreeing to abide by these rules.
Advice for Teachers and Parents
It is important to stress at the onset that, due to the nature of the technology and the uses and abuses to which it is put, it is not possible to guarantee the safety of all children using the internet, the World-Wide Web or other on-line services. However, with appropriate precautions, it should be possible to greatly minimise the risks involved. It is widely believed that the potential benefits for students and teachers of using this technology far outweigh any risks involved.
Any dangers inherent in Internet use can be compared to similar risks associated with other electronic media. Adequate supervision is vital, as it would be in the case of a child’s television or video viewing. Controlling access to the sites and services used and ensuring that children act responsibly while on-line are important steps in the process. Children should be informed that their on-line activities will be monitored and that they are accountable for their behaviour.