Filtering and Monitoring
The use of technology has become a significant component of many safeguarding issues and is often the platform that facilitates harm. An effective approach to Online Safety empowers a school to protect and educate the whole school community in their use of technology and establishes mechanisms to identify, intervene and escalate any incident where appropriate.
Online Safety contains a breadth of issues but can be categorised into four main areas:
- Content: being exposed to illegal, inappropriate or harmful material
- Contact: being subjected to harmful online interaction with other users
- Conduct: personal online behaviour that may increase the likelihood of harm, either to themselves or others
- Commerce/Contract: being exposed to online gambling, inappropriate advertising, phishing and/or financial scams
Gatley Primary School uses a filtering and monitoring system called Securly Filter that is supplied with the broadband service installed by our external IT provider, Esi-Tech.
Securly Filter monitors the traffic on our network and ensures the use of certain websites and search topics is restricted.
Please see below for some FAQs about how we filter and monitor at our school:
What does Securly Filter do?
The software monitors internet traffic and blocks inappropriate content.
How does Securly Filter identify an issue?
Securly Filter has predefined categories and searches that are automatically blocked. This is updated regularly by Securly and the 'Blocked List' can also be added to manually by school admin users where other issues are identified.
What happens if a search is deemed to be inappropriate?
The user will see a screen telling them that the content is blocked and will not allow them to progress.
Who monitors Securly Filter?
The system is set up to email the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL), the Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads (DDSLs) and our external IT provider (Esi-Tech) as soon as blocked content is detected.
How are issues logged?
Securly Filter has a dashboard that can be accessed by admin users. This shows details of the issue, the date and time, the name of the laptop/ipad as well as a user name. From here, dashboard content can be filtered and reports can be generated.
How often are the filtering options reviews based on children's current/changing interests and vocabulary etc?
This is monitored by Esi-Tech but is also maintained by Securly as new trends appear. Securly also use AI to inform their filtering and monitoring systems and their software is programmed to detect issues in 160 different languages.
The Teaching of Online Safety
Whilst technical solutions are important, we also teach pupils how to take a responsible approach to e-safety. Children and young people need the help and support of the school to recognise and avoid risks, to know how to report any content they think is unsuitable and to build resilience.
For more information about how we teach e-safety, please click on this link: https://gatleyprimary.com/our-curriculum/implementation-and-progression-of-our-curriculum/computing
All staff undertake Online Safety training as part of our annual safeguarding procedures.