Keyham Lodge & Millgate School e-Safety Project – first thoughts

Keyham Lodge and Millgate School are currently working together on an ambitious project which will establish the school federation as a national e-safety centre of excellence for  schools that support learners with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties (SEBD). The project aims to increase student, staff and parental awareness. The project will create and share a range of high quality cross-curricular resources that can be used to support SEBD learners. A bespoke training package for staff and learners is being created with the help of experts, specifically focusing on e-safety in relation to mobile technologies. An e-safety questionnaire is also being designed to find out what pupils, parents, carers and staff know, and identify areas where more support may be needed. Survey findings will inform the direction of the project and the resources created.

Project lead Darren John (Learning Technology Lead for the two schools) writes:

Keyham Lodge and Millgate are Federated schools supporting children with Social, emotional and Mental Health needs. We deal with some of the most vulnerable children in Leicester City and see e-safety education and work as vital in terms of supporting their personal safety.

We have teamed up with James Diamond,  because of his role as Safeguarding Officer for Leicester City Council, as well as his interest in e-safety and the recognised contacts he has made in this field, including Ken Corish and Professor Andy Phippen of South West Grid for Learning (who agreed to provide advice on the student survey). James is currently employed as the Leader of Digital Learning at Abbotsholme School in Staffordshire, but continues to provide online safety guidance to schools and organisations.

James Diamond and I met in order to lay down our plans.

The three main initial areas were:

  1. Laying out a road map to see how we could complete the project.
  2. Producing the initial questionnaire to give to stakeholders.
  3. Buying and setting up the equipment requested under the bid.

Laying out a road map to see how we could complete the project

James and I have now had five meetings and a number of conversations by phone and email, focusing primarily on the initial questionnaire and the planning for what we will do with the gathered data. We have also visited Warning Zone in Frog Island, to see if their new e-learning zone can be utilised for the training programme.

Producing the initial questionnaire to give to stakeholders

The survey is based on previous student online experience surveys produced by Andy Phippen at the University of Plymouth, and is designed to elicit honest opinions from the young people completing it. The aim is to gather as true a reflection as possible about their online experiences.

Our discussion focused on how easy the questionnaire would be to complete, based on literacy levels of the young people across the two schools. We decided the questionnaire should be completed with careful help from staff on each point, whilst ensuring the answers aren’t elicited through poor guidance.

Once implemented, the questionnaires went out to all pupils in September. The questionnaire for parents and staff have been delayed slightly in order to allow for any changes that become highlighted by the pupil answers, particularly by those about getting round rules and who pupils are prepared to go to with issues that concern them. The results will then be used as the foundation for the training program, to be implemented later in the academic year.

Buying and setting up the equipment requested under the bid

We have invested in 32 tablets (16 at each site). This was in order to move away from the traditional PC/Laptop approach and give the staff and pupils more of an opportunity to use ICT flexibly. We also have plans to change the wireless SSIDs to allow for Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) for pupils in the future. We had never used Apple Configurator or any form of MDM before, so some research has been required. Due to cost, we’ve opted for Configurator, as it is free, and we don’t as yet have more than 35 Apple devices.

Planning for the training will be completed when all the questionnaires are returned, the analysis done, and the staff/parent questionnaires have gone out.

About Josie Fraser

UK-based Social and Educational Technologist, currently working for Leicester City Council (Local Government) as ICT Strategy Lead (Children's Capital). I support schools across the city in making effective and innovative use of technology to support learning, teaching and whole school development.
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