E-safety for schools Online safety advice and resources for schools and colleges

Boy in school uniform with mobile phoneSchools play a key role in promoting internet safety. A whole school approach to e-safety can help involve staff, governors, parents and pupils themselves in keeping children and young people safe online.

Our information and resources can help you develop:

  • a trained workforce who are confident in online safety, identifying and responding to concerns
  • resources to teach children and young people the skills to stay safe online
  • resources and advice to share with parents and carers
  • robust e-safety policies and procedures, IT infrastructure and support and regular reviewing of your e-safety provision.

Staff training

Digital technology is continually changing so it's important that schools stay up-to-date with new developments.

All teaching and support staff should attend annual training.

Our elearning course Keeping Children Safe Online was developed with the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP). It ensures staff have the knowledge and skills to act appropriately and confidently to protect children.

At least one member of staff should also have accredited training such as the Ambassador Course from CEOP.

Keeping children safe online elearning course

Online training to give you a clear understanding of how children use the internet and digital technology. Cost: £30 - multiple licences available for schools and colleges.

Find out more

Teaching resources

Teaching staff play a pivotal role in helping children and young people to understand the online world, recognise risks and stay safe online.

An engaging and up-to-date e-safety curriculum can ensure pupils of all ages know how to stay safe and protect themselves and others online. We have Share Aware teaching resources for ages 5-11 years and the UK Safer Internet Centre provide advice on Curriculum planning.

If a child or young person needs confidential help and advice direct them to Childline. Calls to 0800 1111 are free and children can also contact Childline online or read about Online and mobile safety on the Childline website. You can also download or order Childline posters and wallet cards.

Share Aware lesson plans and resources

Our lesson plans and teaching guidance cover curriculums across the UK for Key Stage 2 and First and Second Years.

Find out more and download resources

E-safety policies and procedures

All schools and colleges should have policies and procedures for how to safeguard against and respond to an online safety incident.

We have produced a range of guides and example documents you can use to develop policies and procedures in 3 key areas. These are part of our free Education Self-Assessment Tool (ESAT) to help designated safeguarding leads in schools in England assess how well they are meeting statutory and recommended safeguarding practices.

E-safety or online safety policy

Acceptable use policy

How to respond to an e-safety incident

Supporting parents

Involving parents or carers in learning about online safety is a key part of a whole school approach to e-safety. We know from our research with parents that they want to learn more about online safety and would welcome information from their child’s school.

There are many ways to involve parents or carers. You could:

  • organise sessions where pupils teach parents or carers
  • regularly share resources with parents through newsletters or hardcopy
  • show parents the learning resources you use in the classroom
  • circulate your e-safety policies.

Through our partnership with O2 we have produced a range of resources to support schools in supporting parents. Use the resources below to share knowledge and best practice on keeping children safe online.

Parent workshops with O2

We deliver online safety parent workshops, in partnership with O2, to primary schools across the UK.

If your primary school is part of the Speak out Stay safe programme you can book a session for us to come to your school and deliver an hour-long session to help parents and carers keep their family safe online.

You just need to provide a room and ensure 20 parents attend the session.

Email schools@nspcc.org.uk for more information

Share our information and briefings

We have lots of online safety information and advice which you can share with the parents and carers at your school.

We also have a series of online safety briefings which you can print off and hand out or download and email around:

See all our advice for parents

Net Aware - a guide to social networks

Net Aware reviews around 40 of the most popular social networking sites, apps and games used by children and young people. It also gives the views of parents and children.

Net Aware is a great resource to share with parents and carers who want to know about:

  • suitable ages
  • privacy settings
  • appropriate content
  • safety and support settings
  • and keep-up-to-date through our newsletter.

Go to Net Aware

IT systems and data protection

Schools should also ensure they have good IT infrastructure and information management practices.

Ongoing monitoring and evaluation

Girl in school uniform with mobile phoneThe online world changes day-to-day so make sure you keep up-to-date with developments and regularly risk assess your policies, systems and procedures.

  • Sign up to our monthly email alert Safeguarding in Education Update to stay up-to-date with the latest child protection and safeguarding policy, practice and research.
  • Regularly review and update your policies and procedures. Consider involving pupils in the development and review of policies and procedures and share updated policies with all staff, pupils and parents, highlighting what has changed.
  • The South West Grid for Learning Trust provide an Online Safety Self-Review Tool for Schools to help you identify strengths and weaknesses in your e-safety approach.
  • The UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) has produced a list of questions (PDF) for governors to ask of their school or college to check and improve the approach to keeping children safe online. 

Further safeguarding information and support for schools

Safeguarding and child protection in schools

Learn more about the information, advice and training we offer to help schools keep children safe from abuse.
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Sign up to the Safeguarding in Education Update

Our monthly newsletter keeps you up-to-date with all the latest child protection and safeguarding policy, practice and research.

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How safe are our children? Growing up online

Our annual flagship conference is for everyone working in child protection.

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Ask us for information and advice

Our information specialists can find research, resources and answers to your child protection or safeguarding questions.

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Bespoke training and consultancy support

Our safeguarding experts can help your school or college develop or review your safeguarding provisions and created tailor training for your staff.

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