Ø Social networking is not supported by any of the school’s computers and should never be happening on mobile ‘phones during lesson times.
Ø It is not legal for a child under the age of 13 to have a Facebook account.
Ø Students who are 13 or over (and their parents) need to keep in mind that school can not be responsible for arguments or threats which are being aired over social networking sites.
Ø Cyber bullying is a misuse of a public network and is therefore a criminal offence.
Facebook has emerged as one of the most successful online networking sites in today’s culture and has evolved into a huge global community. Used sensibly, safely and responsibly outside school it should not present problems. Below are some of the things you should always be aware of:
Ø Posting photographs. Once a photograph is on Facebook it is all but impossible to retrieve it. It might seem like a good idea at the time, but bear in mind that it could be very embarrassing at best at a later date.
Ø Using Facebook to “sound off” can make you seem immature and untrustworthy. Don’t use your profile to insult other people.
Ø Make sure you monitor tagged photographs of yourself that other people are putting on the site. If you are tagged in a photo doing something unadvisable, other network contacts will be able to see it too.
Ø Customise your privacy settings.
Ø Keep your address and other specific personal information off-line and remember that on social networking sites people you do not know may not be who they say they are.
Ø Don’t log on when you are supposed to be doing something else (like listening to a teacher!). Facebook records the times you are logged on, so it is not difficult to check.
NB – Parents, we can highly recommend the website www.vodaphone.com/parents, where you can download an extremely useful digital parenting magazine which gives advice on how to stay safe online and deals with all forms of internet and digital communications.