Brentwood has made significant investment in information technology and computer systems to support teaching and learning and to give learners the opportunity to seek information and carry out research. Access to the internet carries with it the danger that learners could find and view material that is unsuitable for them or that they could be put at risk from cyber bullying and unwanted or inappropriate contacts. This policy seeks to ensure that the internet and other forms of information communications technology is used appropriately for learning but with safeguards to protect learners from harm.
- To ensure that learners access to inappropriate sites and locations is restricted.
- To ensure that the use of the internet is for proper purposes related to the teaching, learning and curriculum of this college.
- To protect students from harm and upset that could be caused through giving them access to inappropriate sites, materials, images and contacts.
- To make learners aware that there are inappropriate sites that are harmful and so must be avoided in college and at home.
- To encourage learners to report immediately any inappropriate sites, materials or contacts that they find on the internet either at college or at home.
- To ensure that Brentwood complies with section 127 of the communications Act 2003 and the recommendations of the Byron Report 2008.
- As some mobile communication devices and mobile phones now have internet access, learners bringing any mobile device into college will be required to have it switched off at all times on the premises. This does not include mobile devices used by students as communication and/or behaviour aids, with prior agreement with the Headteacher/College Lead and parents/carers.
- Appropriate Firewalls will be put in place and must be enabled at all times on all the college computers.
- Staff must always check that Firewalls are in place before learners are allowed to access the internet.
- Staff must not disable or bypass Firewalls on any Brentwood owned computer under any circumstances or at any time.
- Learners must be supervised by adults at any time that they are given access to the internet.
- Staff must only use computers for college purposes. Brentwood computers used by staff either at home or in college must not be modified or used for personal use.
- If learners bring digitally stored information into college on a pen drive or by other means, staff must check the suitability of the information before it is played on our computers.
- Learners must be encouraged to notify staff if they at any time come across unsuitable material on a computer or if they feel threatened or harassed by any form of cyber bullying.
- Staff must notify the Headteacher/College Lead immediately if they find unsuitable or inappropriate material on a computer or storage device or if they find that a learner is the subject of cyber bullying.
- Spot checks and audits will be carried out from time to time to ensure that computers are being used appropriately.
- Learners found with mobile devices switched on in college will have those devices confiscated. The device will subsequently be banned from college. This does not include mobile devices used by students as communication and/or behaviour aids, with prior agreement with the Headteacher/College Lead and parents/carers.
- Incidents of inappropriate use of ICT or of cyber bullying will be reported to the headteacher and records will be kept.
Learners and staff will be able to enjoy the use of ICT to enhance teaching, learning and the curriculum and to access useful educational information and materials, without risk of harm or upset.