Best Practice

Ensuring students' online safety

In the third of her series of articles on social media and digital tools, Jennifer Begg looks at the key questions and issues we must discuss with students to help them behave appropriately online.

Dangers accompany many of the opportunities that exist for teenagers online. Unfortunately one of the main problems is protecting teenagers from themselves. What are they sharing online that will come back to haunt them later? Do they understand what can be accessed and that people are watching? 

We need to ensure that every student understands the potential impact of their online behaviour. Working with teenagers, I often bring up online privacy and sharing and you would be surprised how often I hear things like, “but why would an employer look at my Facebook profile?”. As an adult, it seems obvious to me that what I do and say can affect my reputation. However, I am not sure that this is something that would have occurred to me as a teenager.

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