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Online safeguarding resources and training

This Then is The Moon by George Roberts (c) Mike Petitdemange

Safeguarding and child protection continue to be as important as ever, but with many organisations moving their programmes online in response to the coronavirus pandemic, online safety and protection has come to the fore.

Before moving your organisation’s delivery online, ensure your policies and procedures are fit for purpose. Schools and colleges have robust systems in place to support young people and the wider community and your provision should draw upon this good practice (see the DfE Statutory Guidance from 2020/2021 below). Below are some recommended steps, with signposting to organisations, materials, and templates that will help you develop your understanding in this complex area and create a culture of best practice across your organisation.

The plan set out below is covered in our webinar recording from June 2020 – Online safety for organisations working with children and young people.

10 Step Plan

  1. Review your policies. Depending upon the scale and ambitions of your online delivery either include online safety as a section or annex within your safeguarding policy or create a separate policy for Online Safety.
  1. Consider having a named individual with responsibility for online safety.
  1. Depending on your delivery include some or all of the following – principles for choosing platforms or services, use of devices (personal or organisational), training (for your lead and all staff), systems for reporting and logging incidents, data storage, and deletion, plus a review procedure for your provision.
  1. Have an escalation plan (i,e. know what to do and who else to involve if an incident arises).
  1. Have Online Safety Agreements (i.e. put your policy into practice to help staff/young people and parents understand their responsibilities).
  1. Ensure everyone in your organisation knows how to report an issue, and to whom.
  1. Ensure you are GDPR compliant, particularly if you are storing young people’s contact details, filming online sessions etc.
  1. Refine your practice by talking to teachers/artists/young people/parents. Discuss together and amend your delivery accordingly.
  1. Keep up to date with best practices by using the widely available free resources and materials.
  1. Review your policies and procedures as your digital provision grows.


Online issues/definitions

Statutory Guidance from the DfE

The 4 C’s of online behaviour

  • What are the issues? – An outline of the 4 C’s of behaviour as set out by UK Safer Internet Centre.

Guidance on apps/platforms/games

  • NetAware – Produced by NSPCC, this site features the potential risks of popular services/apps, provides guidance for appropriate use, and highlights the official age rating.

Advice on streaming/virtual delivery

Policy/Agreement Templates

  • NSPCC – Acceptable Use and policy templates plus lots of free resources and guidance to use with young people.
  • Sample Online Safety Policy – From the NSPCC child protection in sport unit.
  • Policy Template – South West Grid for Learning/UK Safer Internet

General Advice

  • Internet Matters – Independent charity working in partnership with BBC, Google, BT, and others to provide guidance and support for parents and carers. Content covers screen-time, online abuse, pornography, cyberbullying and more.
  • Parent Zone – Supports parents/children/schools in navigating the internet safely and confidently. Subscribe to their newsletter, check out their website and use their resources and materials.
  • Parent Info – Produced by Parent Zone in partnership with CEOP, this website covers all the issues amplified by the Internet in and beyond online safety. It’s a good source of information for family-focused organisations.
  • Childnet – Resources/advice for young people/teachers and educators

Helplines and Reporting

  • Professionals Online Safety Helpline – Run by SWGfL, this helpline is for anyone working with young people with an online safety issue they or children/young people in their care may face.
  • CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command) – Part of the National Crime Agency and helps keep children and young people safe from sexual abuse and grooming online. Its reporting service can be used by adults, parents, worried friends, or young people themselves.
  • Childline – Resources, helpline, and reporting service for reporting a nude image online/sexting.


Training courses

Norfolk & Norwich Festival Online Safety Module

Before any organisation starts to consider developing their online learning offer, they need to ensure that their policies and procedures are fit for purpose. This short unit explains how schools and other organisations protect their staff and young people online and provides suggestions and examples to enable an organisation to create an appropriate online safety strategy.

Find out more about the Norfolk & Norwich Festival online safety module

NSPCC Online Safety Training

Developed by the NSPCC in association with CEOP, the child protection unit of the National Crime Agency, this e-learning course will help you to understand what children and young people do online, why they take risks, and how to respond to these risks so you can feel confident in protecting the children and young people you work with.

Find out more about the NSPCC online safety training

Safeguarding for Music Groups Online Training Course

MusicMark’s Online Safeguarding in Music Education training course is used and endorsed by one of the country’s biggest music services and has been written specifically to meet the safeguarding training needs of the Music Education sector.

Find out more about the Music Groups Online Training Course

What next?

The Digital Culture Network is here to support you and your organisation. Our Tech Champions can provide free 1-2-1 support to all arts and cultural organisations who are in receipt of, or eligible for, Arts Council England funding. If you need help or would like to chat with us about any of the advice we have covered above, please get in touch. Sign up for our newsletter below and follow us on Twitter @ace_dcn for the latest updates.

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