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Teachers 'believe social media rules and safety should be taught in schools'

05/12/2017 Joanna

Teachers are broadly supportive of the idea of dedicating school hours to the basics of social media safety, according to a new report.

The Nominet research, conducted as part of its Digital Futures campaign, surveyed 4,188 UK adults, 1,041 children aged six to 17, and 725 teachers to get a better idea of their respective impressions of the role social media plays in modern society and education.

It was shown that 75 per cent of teachers believe social media etiquette and safety should be taught during school, which is greater than the percentage of teachers - 58 per cent - who see coding or computer programming as important school subjects.

Despite this, the survey found that only 36 per cent of schools currently teach social media etiquette and safety, compared with 43 per cent that teach coding. This could be a problem, as 14 per cent of those born after 1997 say their health has been negatively affected by social media, while eight per cent believe social media has given them anxiety issues.

Moreover, 59 per cent of this generation say they know somebody who has been bullied online, with 26 per cent admitting to lying on social media in the last six months and 37 per cent saying they feel pressure to impress their online friends and followers.

However, despite this, 60 per cent still see social media as an overall force for good, while 75 per cent of teachers believe the use of ICT in the classroom can enhance the learning environment.

Russell Haworth, chief executive officer of Nominet, said: "It’s clear that there's still work to do when it comes to protecting young people online, and ensuring the internet is a force for good. A great place to start is in our schools, where we can give the future generation the tools they need to thrive in a vibrant digital future."

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