Young people were at the heart of Safer Internet Day 2021 – in schools, at home, and even during the live event broadcast from the BT Tower Studios.
Childnet Digital Champion Lucy was one of those involved as part of the youth panel discussion around identifying and navigating misleading online content. And she was delighted to hear other young people’s opinions and help to spread the word around promoting online safety.
Identifying unreliable content
Lucy said: “I thoroughly enjoyed taking part in Safer Internet Day 2021! I think that the highlights for me were being able to learn more about the theme of unreliable content. It was never really a topic that I focused on but with this being the key theme, I was able to concentrate on it and learn more from others.
“It was a great feeling to be a part of promoting these activities! I’ve always been involved in the activities for my school, but this allowed me to have a wider impact and it was gratifying to be able to perhaps help people that I otherwise would not have had any contact with.”
Staying safe online
The UK Safer Internet Centre coordinates Safer Internet Day each year, reaching millions of young people, parents and carers, and educators across the UK, giving them the vital information and support they need to keep young people safe online.
This year’s theme and accompanying research focused on ‘An Internet Young People Can Trust: How young people are managing reliability and misleading content online’.
“I think the Day is important because it allows online safety to be the centre of attention,” added Lucy. “A majority of people are online every day yet not many pay attention to the safety aspect of it, so Safer Internet Day allows us to highlight the importance of staying safe online.”
Learning new skills
As part of the Childnet Digital Leaders programme, Lucy’s school and her schoolmates were able to build on their existing online safety knowledge with a variety of activities.
“We had a school-wide assembly and competition set up for Safer Internet Day,” she explained. “I think that the Digital Leaders programme has helped in our school as it gave us more of an incentive to be involved in online safety in general.
“We always did activities regarding online safety but the programme has allowed it to be more in the forefront of our school and allowed us to have training and learn new skills that we couldn’t have without it!”
Helpful links for schools: