Why do we need a filtering and monitoring system?
The internet is now used daily in education and has become fundamental. It acts as a key learning tool for children however, it can also be an area for concern due to the nature of potentially harmful content available online.
There are many reasons why filtering and monitoring are required. In school the purpose is to ensure that children do not access unsuitable/inappropriate content. One example is around radicalisation. The Prevent Duty is a statutory obligation for schools to keep children safe from the risk of radicalisation and extremism. As a school, we are aware of the risks posed by the online activity of extremist groups, and how social media is being used to encourage young people to travel to certain countries.
Content filtering works by applying specific parameters to content retrieved via the internet, restricting access to certain materials on websites, Apps, emails or other suspicious items. It can be a hardware or software solution and can often be part of a firewall setting.
Monitoring combined with content filtering alerts for any activities that need to be acted upon, but the information is also used to determine which sites and keywords need to be filtered out. For example, if a new craze appears, the monitoring and filtering system will help us know what associated terms the children are searching for, and what websites they are accessing.
To safeguard and promote the welfare of our children, we provide them with a safe environment in which they can learn and flourish, by ensuring that they are not exposed to any online risks associated with using the internet. We have comprehensive filtering and monitoring systems in place for all devices used in school, and regularly review their effectiveness. Our school uses the Sophos firewall and this is monitored by the IT company, Voktis.
For more information on how to monitor and use filtering at home, click on the links below that discuss parental controls: