Last year the Government Equalities Office announced £500K worth of funding would be given to the UK Safer Internet Centre to help it to continue its important work supporting children, families and schools.
As part of this we, at Childnet, will deliver an updated cyberbullying guidance for schools and accompanying teaching resources
In 2007 we produced cyberbullying guidance for schools, commissioned by the then Department for Culture, Media and Sport, when cyberbullying was emerging as a major concern for schools. Since then, the use of social media and internet-enabled technology has exploded, bringing emerging challenges and opportunities. Now teachers are in a need of updated cyberbullying guidance that draws on the growing evidence base available and includes information about the changing ways young people communicate on social media, as well as the wealth of best practice that has emerged in schools across the UK since 2007. In support of this guidance, and to update and extend our award-winning film, ‘Let’s fight it together’ we are creating a toolkit of resources, including interlinking video resources around the idea of ‘crossing the line’ which will explore issues such as sexting, peer pressure and cyberbullying.
To ensure the guidance and resources are grounded in the experiences of teachers and young people, and to ensure that their voices are central in the creation of these resources we have been speaking directly to those audiences.
We opened out the discussion to schools across the UK in May when we invited schools to take part in a consultation into best practices in preventing and responding to cyberbullying. This has been extremely helpful, with 150 responses which highlight a range of best practices and provide practical and effective examples to other schools
Young people are also playing a key role. This week, Clíodhna from the Education team and Hannah, our Deputy CEO, visited Holloway School to deliver a focus group to hear directly what young people have to say about cyberbullying and how schools can help remove barriers that prevent young people from seeking help about cyberbullying.
The young people were involved in testing and trialling the film concepts to help us explore their understanding and experiences of key issues that will be addressed, and to ensure the films are relatable, relevant and impactful.
Throughout the development of our guidance and resources, we will continue to draw upon the voice of young people and schools, and we’re excited to be partnering with schools across the UK to help us do that.