Education secretary Nicky Morgan has announced that schools must monitor pupils' internet use to protect them from cyberbullying, pornography and radicalisation. A new set of measures have been laid out, meaning that schools should now introduce filtering systems on their computers, and monitor internet use of students from age five.
In 2014 it was made compulsory for schools to teach internet safety, and put measures in place to prevent cyberbullying. Teachers will now be offered training to ensure they are confident in their abilities to keep children safe online.
Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: "The internet is a powerful tool but also poses obvious risks for children and young people. We think schools would welcome greater clarity on how to deploy appropriate filters and monitoring systems and that they will readily fulfil their safeguarding duties in this domain."
As well as worries over cyberbullying, the Department for Education (DfE) stated that this move was prompted by the knowledge that some schoolchildren who travelled or had attempted to travel to Syria had accessed material about militant groups on school computers.
The UK Safer Internet Centre has announced that it will work with the DfE to explore the best way to support schools in meeting the necessary requirements. In addition, a consultation on the measures has been opened by the DfE, which will run until February.
The new measures aim to ensure that children are taught how to use the internet responsibly.
Posted by Harriet McGowan