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St Andrew's College Dublin St Andrew's College Dublin

Talk on Internet Safety for Parents by Wayne Denner

As part of the series of talks for parents, the PTA hosted a talk by Wayne Denner in the Senior School on the 10 January 2019.  This talk focused on the safety of internet use for students ranging from P6 in the Junior School to Sixth Year in the Senior School. Parents with children of this age range are, de facto, not millennials and so education on all things digital and their safety is vital. 

Our children have no concept of a world without instant responses.  Their learning, their social relationships, their entertainment, their games, their early sexual encounters as young adults, in fact everything that life requires of children is happening through the internet.  Technology is not an addendum to young people’s lives anymore; it is how they live their lives. They are the first borg generation!

However, the concerns  parents have for the well-being of their children remains the same.  Their concerns surrounding safety are similar to those in the offline world. Is my child safe? Are they practising safe behaviours? Are they acting within the law? Are they safe from bullying, from interactions with people older than them, from strangers?

Wayne discussed the need to build up their coping skills for life, integrated, as it is, between online and offline worlds and stressed the need to:

  1. Keep up-to-date
  2. Make online safety interesting
  3. Focus on practical ways to be safer online
  4. Use screen time management tools
  5. Use parental controls
  6. Model safe internet behaviour
  7. Be there to listen to our children's questions, fears and issues
  8. Have tech-free bedrooms
  9. Have device-free bedrooms
  10. Switch off our own devices for a certain amount of time each day

He also showed some interesting videos demonstrating how easily children can end up being blackmailed or bullied or extorted based on poor internet safety. These are available through links on his webpage and faceboook page

If you missed the talk, or are looking for more information on the talk then you can find Wayne on line here  and on his very informative Facebook page  in which he posts all the latest updates on internet safety.

A few extra copies of his little booklet are available at Reception in case you missed out on getting one on the night.