The successful delivery of the Northern Ireland Curriculum places an increasing emphasis on Internet access and ICT use. The use of innovative ICT tools in school and at home has been shown to raise educational standards and promote pupil achievement. However, the use of these new technologies can put young people at risk both within and outside school. Many of these risks reflect situations in the off-line world and it is essential that our Online Safety policy is used in conjunction with other school policies, such as the Anti-bullying Policy, Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and Positive Behaviour Policy.
Belfast Royal Academy embraces the use of ICT and is committed to educating all pupils and members of staff on the importance of eSafety. We have a range of systems in place to support and educate all within the school community on the issue of eSafety:
The Department of Education has recently launched a Safer Schools App. This is a free App that can be easily downloaded from the App store or Google play. We would encourage members of our School community to download this safeguarding app as it provides support to parents and carers by ensuring the children in your care are safer online. This is especially important in the current circumstances that we find ourselves in, with pupils using technology daily for personal and social reasons , as well as for online learning. This app is designed to equip families, staff and members of the wider community with expert advice on safeguarding and eSafety issues, including up to date subjects , current online trends and threats and risks to your child.
For further information on the Safe Schools App please visit https://saferschoolsni.co.uk/parent-carer/
Mobile phones are a part of modern society and the School accepts that many pupils will possess them. They are a useful tool, especially where the issue of safety during the journey to and from School is concerned. However, teachers and pupils have a right to teach and learn in a school environment that is free from interruption by mobile phones and other such devices.
To this effect Belfast Royal Academy has implemented a strict policy for the use of mobile phones and electronic devices across all School sites. Mobile phones should be “switched off and out of sight” at all times. Mobile phones may not be used at any time on school premises no matter what time a pupil arrives into school. For full details please see our Policy below.