Cymraeg

Hwb

Online safety action plan for children and young people in Wales



Striving to make the internet a safe place for all is one of the greater challenges of the twenty-first century. With so much of our lives now online, the Welsh Government recognises the critical importance of keeping our children and young people safe.

Social media is so woven throughout the many aspects of our lives, young people no longer disaggregate life online and life offline, instead living life with the internet entwined throughout. However, along with the convenience and ubiquitousness of the internet, it also introduces significant potential risks.

Last year the Welsh Government published An online safety action plan for children and young people in Wales – the first of its kind. The plan set out how the Welsh Government is working with teachers, parents and carers, learners and partners across Wales to keep our children and young people safe online.

The action plan was by no means the beginning of the work undertaken in Wales to protect children and young people online. Predating the action plan, a lot of excellent work had been achieved. It is a continuation of our achievements such as the Hwb Online Safety Zone and our bilingual online safety self-assessment tool, 360 degree safe Cymru. This action plan will continue to provide a focus for our online safety work which is a key priority for me as Minister for Education, and as a parent.

In addition to protecting children and young people from harmful activity online, it is critical that we provide an education that equips children and young people with the knowledge, skills and resilience to keep themselves safe online.

This 2019 action plan provides an update on the work undertaken since the publication of the 2018 action plan in July last year. It also sees the addition of a number of new actions to the body of work being undertaken this year.

In the wider context, there is lots of movement in this arena with the UK Government’s proposals set out as part of their Online Harms White Paper earlier this year. The Welsh Government looks forward to continuing to work with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Home Office as this progresses.

Kirsty Williams AM
Minister for Education

Kirsty Williams AM Minister for Education

Kirsty Williams AM signature


The Welsh Government, on behalf of Welsh Ministers, aims to help protect children and young people from illegal and harmful content on the internet and to promote safe, responsible and considerate behaviour online.

The internet is integral to the lives of children and young people, it provides opportunities to socialise, communicate, be entertained, learn and find support. It can also be exploited by those with malicious intent, targeting vulnerable groups and individuals in our society.

Online safety remains a key Welsh Government priority. The first action plan was commissioned by the then Cabinet Secretary for Education in 2017 to provide a strategic focus and to coordinate the work across government to enhance online safety for children and young people. This document provides an update on each action of the 2018 action plan, summarising the activities undertaken over the past year, and outlining future plans and commitments going forward. The status of each action is marked and a new summary of actions for 2019 is available on pages
78–82.

The commitments and actions continue to be grouped into the following categories.

  • Advice and support – providing children and young people, education practitioners, education professionals, parents and carers with information and knowledge to promote online safety for young people.
  • Collaboration – working together with UK-wide partners and other organisations to take coordinated actions to meet our common aims.
  • Communication and promotion – raising the profile of online safety to reach a wide audience and reinforce the importance of using the internet safely and responsibly.
  • Guidance and policy – maintaining statutory and non-statutory guidance to reflect technological developments and changes in how the internet is used.
  • Research – supporting research into the use of the internet by children and young people so that we stay up to date with the evolving threats and continue to inform policy development and actions needed to promote online safety.
  • Resources – providing a range of resources for children and young people, education practitioners, education professionals, parents and carers to support the delivery of online safety education and promotion.
  • Training and development – providing relevant training to education practitioners, education professionals, schools and other partners to support the delivery of online safety education to children and young people.

Hwb Programme

The Hwb Programme is the Welsh Government’s programme of action for improving the use of digital technology for learning and teaching in schools. This pivotal education programme provides stakeholders across Wales with access to a range of digital tools and resources that can support and assist the transformation of digital classroom practices.

The Hwb Programme encompasses multiple strands of work including online safety actions to support the protection and education of children and young people to use digital tools and the internet safely and appropriately.

Our national mission

Education in Wales: Our national mission, Action plan 2017–20 (2017) sets out how the school system in Wales, including its sixth forms and education otherwise than at school (EOTAS) provision, will move forward up until 2021 to secure the effective implementation of a new curriculum.

Digital competence is a key objective of Curriculum for Wales 2022 and the use of digital tools and the internet will underpin the delivery of the new curriculum.

Supporting learners to become competent and confident in the safe and responsible use of the internet and digital tools is vital to support their learning journey. We aim to give them the skills they will need to maximise the use of digital technology as a learning tool as the internet becomes ever more embedded in daily lives.

United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC)

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is an international agreement that protects the human rights of children under the age
of 18. The Welsh Government is fully committed to making the principles of the UNCRC a reality for all children and young people in Wales.

This action plan will have a positive impact and contribution towards making the articles of the UNCRC a reality for children in Wales. It also recognises that online environments enable children and young people to experience a broad range of their rights including the right to be safe.

Make your space safe, make your voice heard – Pupil Voice Activity

The views of children and young people are integral to the actions that are being taken forward by the Welsh Government to help keep them safe online.

In autumn 2017, an engagement activity pack was designed by the NSPCC and publicised as part of a joint event with the National Assembly for Wales’ Cross Party Group on Children and Young People and the Cross Party Group on Preventing Child Sexual Abuse. The activity pack was made available through the online safety zone on the Hwb learning platform. The activity pack invited children of all ages to share their views to guide the development of the Welsh Government’s first online safety action plan.

In total 246 children and young people responded to the pack. When asked to identify their wish for one key priority for the Online Safety Action Plan, the participants’ top three categories were:

  1. bullying
  2. concern about strangers
  3. deception.

The concerns identified from the engagement activity are a core consideration in the development of the actions that the Welsh Government will take forward to protect children and young people using the internet.

Online safety actions delivered to date

In January 2014, the Welsh Government contracted with a specialist provider, South West Grid for Learning (SWGfL), to promote safe, responsible and considerate behaviour online and to help protect children and young people in Wales from illegal and harmful content on the internet by developing a range of online safety tools, resources and activities aimed at education practitioners and professionals, governors, learners, parents and carers in Wales.

Since 2014 the Welsh Government has:

  • delivered online safety training to more than 5,000 education practitioners and professionals
  • successfully supported the improvement of schools’ online safety provision via the 360 degree safe Cymru tool – the tool is provided through the Hwb digital learning platform to help schools to review and improve their online safety policy and practice
  • produced the Online Safety Resource for Wales, a series of free lesson plans for every year group from Foundation Phase to Key Stage 4 and beyond – the resources are designed to empower learners to think critically, behave safely and participate responsibly in our digital world
  • provided online safety information for education practitioners and professionals, learners, governors, parents and carers through the Online Safety Zone on the Hwb digital learning platform in the form of news, resources, information and guidance, and playlists
  • provided funding and support through the Learning in Digital Wales (LiDW) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Grant to enable the regional consortia to actively promote digital citizenship and the safe and responsible use of digital technology
  • published the guidance Recommended web filtering standards for schools in Wales (2018) to underpin safeguarding learners online; these standards were reviewed in 2017
  • introduced the Digital Competence Framework in 2016 for all schools in Wales to support learners from age 3 to 16 protect themselves online by embedding the digital skills, knowledge and attitudes across the whole curriculum that enable the confident, creative and critical use of technologies and systems

supported Safer Internet Day with competitions for children and schools to create opportunities to discuss online safety.


Advice and support

1.

In recognition of the important role parents and carers play in keeping their children safe online, the Welsh Government will continue to provide bilingual guidance on various online safety issues to support them in keeping their families safe online.

2.

The Welsh Government will continue to periodically share tips and advice with parents and carers about the safe uses of screen time though our ‘Parenting. Give it time.’ campaign website and Facebook pages.

3.

The Welsh Government will develop and provide bilingual online safety guidance and resources for school governors to promote further understanding of online safety issues and to help them in their responsibility to keep learners in their school safe online.

4.

The Welsh Government will host the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Command on Hwb to promote the National Crime Agency’s button for children and young people, parents and carers, education practitioners and professionals, and governors to report any concerns about online sexual abuse.

Collaboration

5.

The Welsh Government will continue to build and support the National Online Safety Network, drawing together expertise from the local authorities and regional consortia to share good practice and to build a sustainable, consistent and rigorous approach to online safety across Wales.

6.

The Welsh Government will work with UK Safer Internet Centre to support the delivery of online safety events including the annual Safer Internet Day, stakeholder preparation sessions and Online Safety Live briefings.

7.

The Welsh Government will engage with the UK Government on the development of a UK Internet Safety Strategy and White Paper.

8.

The Welsh Government will continue to participate in the Executive Board of the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) to ensure Wales is represented at a UK level.

9.

The Welsh Government will continue to support the National Safeguarding in Education Group, to draw together local authority leads and other partners to share good practice and complete project work in safeguarding. Officials from the Welsh Government will attend to represent the Hwb online safety programme of work.

10.

The Welsh Government will continue to engage with the Personal and Social Education (PSE) Advisory Group, considering online safety issues, as appropriate. The PSE Advisory Group will continue to act as a quality assurance for PSE-type lessons when required.

11.

Online safety will play a key role in the future of relationships and sexuality education following the recommendations put forward by the Sex and Relationships Education Expert Panel in March 2017.

12.

The Welsh Government will promote the use of the Digital Competence Framework by continuing to work with schools to embed the necessary digital skills, knowledge and attitudes across the whole curriculum to protect learners online.

13.

The Welsh Government will continue to provide funding through the Regional School Improvement Grant to enable the regional consortia to actively promote digital citizenship and the safe and responsible use of digital technology.

14.

The Welsh Government will participate in the Wales Internet Safety Partnership (WISP) to provide updates on online safety work programmes and discuss online safety issues.

15.

The Welsh Government will continue to review and monitor the impact of the Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Act 2015 and local authorities’ duties in relation to education provision.

16.

The Welsh Government will explore how to strengthen online safety provision in education other than at school (EOTAS) services, including pupil referral units (PRUs).

17.

The Welsh Government’s Health and Education portfolios will jointly fund a pilot to test approaches to the provision of mental health in-reach support to schools from Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

18.

The Welsh Government will continue to work with Pioneer Schools through the relevant areas of learning and experience, including Health and Well-being, to ensure online safety issues inform the development of the new curriculum framework.

Communication and promotion

19.

The Welsh Government will continue to support education stakeholder engagement events which include a focus on online safety.

20.

The Welsh Government will continue to provide a dynamic Online Safety Zone on Hwb, for sources of online safety news, events and resources for children, young people, education professionals, governors, parents and carers.

21.

The Welsh Government will support Safer Internet Day in Wales annually to raise the profile and importance of online safety across Wales.

22.

The Welsh Government will use social media platforms to communicate and raise awareness of the extensive range of online safety activities taking place across Wales.

23.

The Welsh Government will continue to work with SWGfL to provide a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter.

Guidance and policy

24.

The Welsh Government will revise and update the statutory safeguarding guidance Keeping learners safe, which will include an update on online safety.

25.

The Welsh Government will ensure the issues of online grooming and child sexual exploitation are considered when updating the statutory guidance Safeguarding Children and Young People from Sexual Exploitation.

26.

A multi-agency task and finish group will develop all Wales practice guidance on safeguarding children at risk of online abuse. This will be consulted on and issued by Cardiff and the Vale Safeguarding Board on behalf of The Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS) Cymru and the Safeguarding Boards in Wales. The National Protection Procedures and supporting practice guidance are intended to be issued in early 2019.

27.

The Welsh Government will maintain the recommended web filtering standards for schools in Wales.

28.

The Welsh Government will review and revise the non-statutory anti-bullying guidance Respecting others, which includes advice on tackling online bullying in schools.

29.

The Welsh Government will review the anti-bullying resources that are currently available for schools and assess any needs to better support education practitioners to tackle bullying in education settings.

30.

The Welsh Government will maintain Respect and resilience guidance for schools.

Research

31.

The Welsh Government will continue to explore current screen time usage by children in Wales to inform policy development in this area.

Resources

32.

The Welsh Government will work with SWGfL to promote and provide access to 360 degree safe Cymru, a bilingual online safety self-assessment tool that is available to all maintained schools in Wales, through single sign-on (SSO) with Hwb. The content of the tool, in addition to the associated policy templates, will be updated once every two years.

33.

The Welsh Government will develop bilingual online safety resources for primary and secondary children on a range of specific online safety issues.

34.

The Welsh Government will explore what online safety resources are available and how they can be tailored for home-educating parents and carers.

35.

The Welsh Government will continue to develop a range of bilingual online safety materials for education practitioners, including classroom resources and teachers guides.

36.

The Welsh Government will continue to provide new materials to enable education practitioners to host online safety sessions for parents and carers.

37.

The Welsh Government will continue to work with Common Sense Media and SWGfL to develop and publish over 50 bilingual lesson plans and associated resources on a range of online safety issues.

38.

The Welsh Government will continue to review, update and publish the Online Safety Resource for Wales on Hwb.

39.

The Welsh Government will part-fund the development of a Year 6 child sexual exploitation resource.

40.

The Welsh Government will develop and roll out a safeguarding audit tool and guidance for schools to use to assess their safeguarding provision.

41.

The Welsh Government will work with the NSPCC to host a new bilingual version of NSPCC’s Net Aware resources.

42.

The update of the Welsh Government’s counselling toolkit will include a chapter on online counselling, giving guidance on providing a safe online service.

Training and development

43.

The Welsh Government will continue to deliver a comprehensive online safety training programme, focusing on specific areas of online safety.

44.

The Welsh Government will continue to promote the Keeping learners safe – Online safety module.

45.

The Welsh Government will ensure online safety remains a key part of all digital inclusion-related activity.

46.

The Welsh Government will continue to work with key stakeholders to provide training material and support on matters relating to counter-terrorism.

  • Parents and carers play an integral role in ensuring their children are suitably confident and equipped to stay safe online. As part of the online safety project the Welsh Government will develop a parent and carer’s guide to provide an understanding of what their children are exploring in school.

    During 2017–18, the Welsh Government funded SWGfL to develop and create bilingual online safety guidance on various online safety issues specifically to support parents and carers in keeping their families safe online. This included a series of ‘A parent and carer’s guide to … ’ and a playlist covering the following topics.

    • A parent and carer’s guide to age ratings of apps and games.
    • A parent and carer’s guide to Google SafeSearch and YouTube Safety Mode.
    • A parent and carer’s guide to talking to your child about staying safe online.
    • A parent and carer’s guide to using safety features built into Smart TVs and
      on-demand streaming services.
    • A parent and carer’s guide to sharing information and images online.
    • Fact or fiction: Don’t be fooled online (parents and carers).

    To build upon the success of the series, the Welsh Government funded a further year of the series, with topics identified by parents and carers at online safety focus groups which took place across Wales in early 2017.

    Update for 2019

    In 2018–19 the Welsh Government continued to fund the ‘A parent’s and carer’s guide to … ’ series and published the following topics.

    The Welsh Government has committed to continuing this series. It will extend its audience to take into account the important role the extended families play in keeping children safe online. During 2019–20 the Welsh Government will produce six family guides with the following titles.

    • A family guide to talking about screen time.
    • A family guide to talking about pornography.
    • A family guide to talking about online bullying.
    • A family guide to talking about grooming.
    • A family guide to talking about sexting.
    • A family guide to talking about radicalisation and extremism.

    To accompany the family guides the Welsh Government has commissioned the production of a series of six short ‘Starting the conversation’ films for families. The films will be aimed at families (including parents, carers, grandparents and extended family) and will be based on the information provided from field experts and academic opinion from across the UK. The films will be launched throughout the 2019–20 academic year and will focus on the same topics as the family guides.

    • Starting the conversation about screen time.
    • Starting the conversation about pornography.
    • Starting the conversation about online bullying.
    • Starting the conversation about online grooming.
    • Starting the conversation about sexting.
    • Starting the conversation about radicalisation and extremism.

  • Our ‘Parenting. Give it time.’ campaign was launched in November 2015. The campaign promotes positive parenting messages in a number of different ways, including through social and print media, and digital advertising. A dedicated website and Facebook page provide parenting tips, information and advice, and signpost parents/carers to sources of further support. A booklet and a series of information advice sheets on handling common parenting concerns is also provided to parents/carers.

    In an informal survey of 1,490 parents of under-fives in Wales in March 2016,
    more than a quarter listed their child’s use of technology, such as smart phones, computers, tablets and similar devices, as one of their top three parenting concerns.

    Screen time refers to time spent in front of a screen watching television or using a computer, tablet or smartphone. Current parenting recommendations are to limit the amount of screen time children have, especially for those aged five and under.

    Some of the negative effects of screen use can be offset by parents/carers sharing screen time with their children. Advice for parents/carers provided through the campaign website focuses on how they can integrate digital media into their family life. Specific tips are provided around online safety, age-appropriate content, setting limits, and role-modelling how and when technology is used.

    Update 2019

    We intend to extend the age ranges for ‘Parenting. Give it time.’ up to 18 in order to support parents/carers with older children as they go through emotional and hormonal changes that could ultimately result in changing the dynamics of their relationship. The proposed new resources and policies for parents/carers will include additional information about lifestyle, health, education and safety (including online safety) such as sharing online, making friends, bullying, examination stress and the differences in brain development. To ensure accuracy, we will refer to trusted sources of information and work in partnership with our colleagues in other departments to enhance rather than duplicate provision, as well as work closely with the professionals in the field.

    We will also commission a ‘New Faces’ competition to find four new families with older children, to share their personal experiences of the joys and challenges of raising a young family in the hope that other parents/carers benefit from their stories.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • In recognition of the key role governors play in safeguarding within a school and listening to feedback from stakeholders during 2017–18, the Welsh Government funded the development of resources aimed at governors through their specialist contractor SWGfL to develop bilingual online safety guidance and resources for governors.

    The resources for governors mirrored the topics created for learners, parents and carers, and education practitioners and professionals.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 the Welsh Government funded the creation of a further six playlist resources for governors covering key areas of online safety. The titles of the resources which have been published are as follows.

    Continuing to increase the number of resources available for governors, during 2019–20 the Welsh Government has commissioned the production of the following resources specifically for governors.

    • Online reputation.
    • Screen time, technology and mental health.
    • Consent in an online world.
    • Illegal and offensive content.
    • Online hate speech.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Click CEOP button is an asset of the National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Command. The CEOP Command works to protect children and young people from the harm of sexual abuse and exploitation both online and offline.

    The button has been developed to offer children and young people, parents and carers, education practitioners and professionals, and governors working with these groups with a simple and convenient mechanism for gaining access to trusted online safety advice, help and support. It also provides access to an online mechanism for reporting known or suspected child sexual exploitation or child sexual abuse directly to CEOP. This is offered as a convenient and potentially less intimidating method of reporting these sensitive types of crime, alternative to face-to-face and telephone reporting to local police forces.

    Reports can be made to CEOP by children and young people, parents or carers, education practitioners or professionals, or governors working with these groups.

    CEOP operates a 24/7 service for the receipt of reports. All reports to CEOP are treated as reports of crime and as such anonymous reports cannot be accepted.

    Update 2019

    The CEOP button is a permanent feature on the home page of the Online Safety Zone on Hwb. With a single click the button takes you to CEOP’s page where anyone can report if they are worried about online sexual abuse or the way someone has been in communication with you online. It will remain on the homepage of Hwb and periodically we will publish news articles on the Online Safety Zone to promote the uses of the button and raise awareness of it.

    Action status: Delivered.

  • The National Online Safety Network (NOSN) is the network of professionals from educational settings, local authorities, regional consortia and other organisations across Wales which contributes to the development of effective online safety practice.

    This practitioners’ network was established in November 2017 to facilitate a dialogue across Wales to support the development of robust arrangements of online safety in the country.

    The NOSN meets three times a year and their primary focus is to identify and develop arrangements to support practitioners to deliver a shared objective to help keep children and young people safe online.

    The NOSN discuss issues which impact on online safety matters and provide expert advice and views to the Welsh Government to steer the Online Safety Programme, which is part of the wider Hwb Programme.

    Update 2019

    The Improving Efficiency Board, chaired by the then Cabinet Secretary for Finance, asked officials to consider how we engage with our stakeholders and as part of the exercise to review all advisory groups across the Welsh Government. Officials were asked to consider their efficiency and reduce any duplication and unnecessary bureaucracy for stakeholders.

    Following our review across the Welsh Government, it was agreed that the NOSN should be incorporated into the Safeguarding in Education Group (SEG) as online safety is integral and firmly a safeguarding matter (see Action 9).

    Action status: Closed.

  • As part of its outreach work for the UK Safer Internet Centre programme of ‘Online Safety Briefings’, SWGfL, as partner in the UK Safer Internet Centre, will deliver
    fifteen two-hour briefing sessions across Wales. The sessions give up-to-date information on the latest online safety, trends, technologies, issues and research, as well as signposting delegates to resources and advice. The events are designed specifically for any professional working with children and young people including school staff, safeguarding professionals, youth workers, police, social workers and health professionals.

    The Safer Internet Day stakeholder event will bring together key stakeholders to discuss the collaborative plans for Safer Internet Day 2019.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 eleven ‘Online Safety Briefings’ were delivered as part of the UK Safer Internet Centre outreach work delivering an overview on online safety to 158 people. Sessions were held in Porthcawl, Llanelli, Colwyn Bay, Felinfach, Cardiff, Deeside, Anglesey, Aberystwyth, Caerphilly, Monmouth and Sully. Attendees included those from education, health and social services. Due to low registration, four briefings were cancelled.

    During 2019–20 the UK Safer Internet Centre will deliver ten ‘Online Safety Briefings’ in Wales giving up-to-date information on the latest online safety trends, technologies, issues and research, as well as signposting delegates to resources and advice.

    On Thursday 8 November 2018 the UK Safer Internet Centre held the Safer Internet Day Stakeholder Planning Event at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff Bay. This event, attended by a range of stakeholders, provided an opportunity for them to hear directly from the UK Safer Internet Centre about what the 2019 campaign would involve, how they can support it and to exchange ideas about how they can get involved.

    Planning is already under way to mark Safer Internet Day 2020, which will take place on 11 February 2020 in Wales.

    Building on the success of the last event, the Welsh Government will work with the UK Safer Internet Centre to host a Stakeholder Information Event on 13 November 2019 to support organisations to get involved in Safer Internet Day 2020.

    A Safer Internet Day competition for children and young people was launched on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb in September 2019. The winner of the competition will be announced at an official Safer Internet Day event on Safer Internet Day itself.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Welsh Government is engaging with the UK Government and contributing to the development of the UK Internet Safety Strategy.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 the Welsh Government has continued to engage with the UK Government and contributed to the development of the UK Internet Safety Strategy.

    The Welsh Government engaged with the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Home Office in the lead up to the publication of the Online Harms White Paper and provided contributions to the ongoing work impacting on online safety in Wales. During the consultation period Welsh Government officials met with officials from DCMS and the Home Office to discuss the details of the Online Harms White Paper and implications for devolved administrations, and subsequently submitted a response to the Online Harms White Paper.

    During 2019–20 the Welsh Government will continue to engage with the UK Government on the development of the UK Internet Safety Strategy and the Online Harms agenda.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) is a group of more than 200 organisations drawn from across government, industry, law, academia and charity sectors that work in partnership to help keep children and young people safe online. The council was established in 2010 following a review by Professor Tanya Byron discussing, and taking action, on topical issues concerning children’s use of the internet.

    Update 2019

    The UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS) is the successor to the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS), with an expanded scope to improve online safety for everyone in the UK.

    The Executive Board of UKCIS brings together expertise from a range of organisations in the technology industry, civil society and public sector. During
    2018–19 the Welsh Government has been represented at the UKCIS Executive Board meetings ensuring Wales was represented at a UK level. The Welsh Government has also recently become a member of the UKCIS Education Working Group.

    During 2019–20 the Welsh Government will continue to be represented at the UKCIS Executive Board meetings and the UKCIS Education Working Group.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Safeguarding in Education Group (SEG) comprises of safeguarding leads across all local authorities in Wales, as well as other interested bodies such as, Estyn and the Association of Directors of Education in Wales (ADEW). The group meets three times a year to share best practice and deliver an agreed programme of work. SEG also act as informal consultants for Welsh Government policies and projects.

    Update 2019

    The Safeguarding in Education Group (SEG) has met three times during 2018–19. As well as sharing good practice during meetings, SEG has also helped to develop the revised statutory guidance Keeping learners safe for public consultation. They are regularly updated on the Online Safety Programme with details of newly published resources and events.

    The Welsh Government will continue to support SEG to draw together local authority leads and other partners to share good practice and complete project work in safeguarding. Members will be asked to support the implementation of the revised Keeping learners safe guidance, post-consultation.

    Online safety is now and will continue to be a standard item on the SEG agenda.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Personal and Social Education (PSE) Advisory Group has been established to provide a forum for discussing possible ways to support schools to deliver high-quality sessions relating to the PSE framework.

    The purpose of the PSE Advisory Group is to provide advice guidance and highlight opportunities to support schools in delivering high-quality PSE.

    As recognised specialists in their areas, members of the group provide advice on the impact of curriculum reform in Wales relating to the delivery of PSE and the links to the Health and Well-being Area of Learning and Experience of Curriculum for Wales 2022.

    Members of the group also provide quality assurance on learning and teaching resources before they are published and hosted on Hwb, the digital learning platform for Wales. This is to ensure high-quality consistent teaching support is hosted in one place for easy access for practitioners.

    Update 2019

    The Personal and Social Education (PSE) Advisory Group meets three times a year to provide quality assurance on teaching and learning resources before they are published and hosted on Hwb. As recognised specialists in their areas, members of the group have been asked to consider and provide advice on the impact of curriculum reform in Wales relating to the delivery of PSE and the links to the Health and Well-being Area of Learning and Experience in Curriculum for Wales 2022.

    The Welsh Government will continue to use the PSE Advisory Group as a quality assurance for PSE-type lessons as required and consider online safety issues as appropriate.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • Online safety was a key area within the recommendations submitted by the Sex and Relationship Education (SRE) Expert Panel in December 2017. The then Cabinet Secretary for Education accepted those recommendations in principal in May 2018. Online safety will play a key role in the future of relationships and sexuality education (RSE) the new updated name for SRE. New guidance will be provided in 2019.

    Update 2019

    The Welsh Government accepted all of the recommendations of the Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) Expert Panel in May 2018. To support the development Curriculum for Wales 2022, the SRE Expert Panel chair (Professor Renold) has worked with the Health and Well-being Area of Learning and Experience Pioneer Schools to ensure that approaches were coordinated and that pioneers were informed by the work undertaken by the panel.

    The comprehensive body of evidence gathered by the SRE Expert Panel will support us as we take forward approaches to improving the delivery of relationships and sexuality education in schools, in the current and future curriculum.

    Sex and relationships education (SRE) has been renamed to relationships and sexuality education (RSE). This change in name draws on the World Health Organisation’s definition of sexuality education and will encourage schools to consider the wider array of topics identified in the SRE Expert Panel report and potential links with other areas.

    Earlier this year we consulted on draft relationships and sexuality education (RSE) guidance and a summary of the consultation responses was published in July 2019.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The Digital Competence Framework (DCF) which was made available in September 2016 supports learners to protect themselves online by embedding the digital skills, knowledge and attitudes across the whole curriculum that enable the confident, creative and critical use of technologies and systems.

    The DCF has four strands of equal importance (Citizenship, Interacting and collaborating, Producing, and Data and computational thinking).

    The focus of the Citizenship strand is on learners developing the skills and behaviours to contribute positively to the digital world around them which includes protecting themselves online. The Interacting and collaborating strand allows learners to explore both formal and informal methods of communication including social media and instant messaging. Learners will not only look at how to store data, but will consider the implications of data laws and how to share information appropriately.

    The Welsh Government wants to provide all teachers with confidence when integrating digital competence into their lessons. The Digital Pioneer Schools are now actively helping other schools with the implementation of the DCF and the Welsh Government want to maintain this momentum to ensure that they, together with regional consortia, are supporting schools with the necessary expertise. The Welsh Government’s Digital Pioneer Schools are also continuing to develop materials which will be hosted on Hwb for all schools to access. The Digital Pioneers are also working alongside the Curriculum Pioneers on the development of the new areas of learning and experience to ensure that digital competence is effectively embedded across Curriculum for Wales 2022.

    Update 2019

    Welsh Government officials worked alongside our Digital Pioneers and regional consortia to ensure our expectations were clearly articulated to schools. We reinforced communications comprising news about updated information materials, promotion of four new Digital Competence Framework ‘strand’ animations, school case studies and a Dysg Digital Competence Framework edition.

    Working with the Digital Pioneers the Welsh Government has developed further support materials that are available on Hwb. Evidence from Estyn notes that schools have risen to the challenge of embedding digital competence into their provision, reporting many examples of innovative and interesting practice from across Wales.

    Digital competence is a cross-curricular responsibility within Curriculum for Wales 2022. The Welsh Government will continue to support schools to embed digital competence within their provision.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • Previously known as the Learning in Digital Wales (LiDW) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Grant (Phase 2), a continuation of the three-year programme which began in January 2014, a further £1.5m of grant funding has been agreed which will provide continued support for the Hwb Programme to regional consortia for three years from 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2019.

    Activities focus on:

    • providing support to practitioners in schools to develop their confidence and competence in using the range of digital resources and tools available through the LiDW programme
    • providing capacity for expert ‘Digital Leader’ support which will coordinate support for schools across the regional consortium in adopting and exploiting the LiDW tools and activities
    • actively promoting digital citizenship in relation to the safe and responsible use of the tools and resources available through the LiDW programme and in relation to digital technology more widely
    • supporting practitioners in developing their own leadership and digital literacy skills in line with the development and implementation of Digital Competence Framework and Curriculum for Wales 2022
    • supporting the ongoing development of the LiDW programme by supporting the Welsh Government’s Digital Learning Unit in gathering feedback from education practitioners to inform the future direction of the programme.

    Update 2019

    The Learning in Digital Wales (LiDW) CPD Grant (Phase 2) – £1.45m of grant
    funding – was provided as continued support for the Hwb Programme to regional consortia for three years from 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2019.

    For its final year (2018–19), the LiDW CPD Grant was subsumed into the Regional Education Consortia School Improvement Grant (REC SIG). The four regional consortia offered a variety of support options and development opportunities under the programme during this period.

    In April 2019, Phase 3 of the grant began with £500k of funding made available for the first year. The expectations are that the regional consortia will use the funding to continue to support the Hwb Programme and actively promote digital citizenship, and the safe and responsible use of digital technology.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The Wales Internet Safety Partnership (WISP) was founded by BT Wales and WISE KIDS in May 2007. It is an informal partnership of representative member organisations in Wales (or whose remit covers Wales), which have an interest in promoting digital literacy for children and young people in Wales.

    The aim of WISP is to promote digital literacy for children and young people in Wales, through the sharing of information, knowledge, ideas, resources and good practice among members. The broader aim of WISP is to engage children and young people more effectively to enable them to:

    • better understand the digital world
    • be effective users of online technologies
    • assess online risk, and manage their personal safety and digital identities.

    Update 2019

    Throughout 2018–19 the Welsh Government has continued to attend the Wales Internet Safety Partnership (WISP) with officials from Digital Inclusion and Digital Learning attending and providing updates on work programmes.

    The Welsh Government is committed to continuing engagement with WISP and working with its members. This engagement will continue going forward.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Act received Royal Assent on 29 April 2015 and is intended to ensure a focus across the public sector on the prevention of these issues, the protection of victims and the support for those affected by such issues.

    The overarching purpose is to improve the public sector response to gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence and to provide a strategic focus on these issues and ensure consistent consideration of preventative, protective and support mechanisms in the delivery of services.

    Objective 2 of the National Strategy on Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence 2016–2021 relates to this area:

    Increased awareness in children and young people of the importance of safe, equal and healthy relationships and that abusive behaviour is always wrong.

    To support the education-related provisions in the Act and the objective in the strategy, the Welsh Government are progressing a comprehensive wider package of measures, which link to the Department for Education and Skills’ safeguarding in schools agenda and to implementation of the curriculum review.

    In 2015–16 the Welsh Government produced awareness-raising materials for school governors and published a Good Practice Guide: A Whole Education Approach to Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse & Sexual Violence in Wales. The Welsh Government also commissioned Welsh Women’s Aid in partnership with Against Violence and Abuse (AVA) to research and compile a package of best practice materials in relation to these matters, for use in education settings across Wales.

    Update 2019

    We have consulted on national indicators to measure the impact of the Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Act 2015. In light of the need to reduce bureaucratic burdens, and the review of the curriculum, the Welsh Government does not intend, at this stage, to introduce the duty for local authorities to report on educational provision in respect of the Act.

    Action status: Closed.

  • In December 2017, the Welsh Government published the Education otherwise than at school (EOTAS) Framework for Action – the culmination of two years sector engagement and discussion by the cross-sector EOTAS Task and Finish Group. The overarching aim of the framework is to increase the equality of opportunity for learners accessing EOTAS provision, to better enable them to fulfil their potential.

    The EOTAS Delivery Group, which includes representatives from EOTAS provision, local authorities and mainstream schools, has been established to oversee the implementation of the framework. In implementing the 34 proposals within the framework, the EOTAS Delivery Group will be exploring how access to pastoral services such as careers advice, counselling and Hwb can be improved for EOTAS learners.

    Update 2019

    We continue to implement the EOTAS Framework for Action. Where appropriate, online safety within EOTAS provision will be included.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The Welsh Government’s mental health in-reach to schools pilot aims to help and support teachers to respond to children and young people who are experiencing difficulties such as anxiety, low mood, and compulsive, self-harm or conduct disorders. Mental health issues may, in some cases, be due to or exacerbated by, digital technology.

    The funded pilot activity will cover two full academic years, concluding in the summer of 2020. There will be a specific focus on early identification and intervention. The pilot will run in three areas – Betsi Cadwaladr University Local Health Board for north east Wales (Wrexham and Denbighshire); Aneurin Bevan Local Health Board for south east Wales (Blaenau Gwent, Torfaen and south Powys); and Hywel Dda Health Board in west Wales (Ceredigion).

    Funding also includes provision to evaluate the pilots, and the evaluation will inform future policy direction.

    Update 2019

    The Welsh Government has agreed to fund £1.4m to pilot mental health in-reach support to schools for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).The mental health in-reach services provide specialist health support, advice and training to schools. While this does not specifically focus on online safety, it will provide school staff with the skills and confidence to respond to learners displaying signs of emotional distress. School staff will be better positioned to have conversations with learners about their mental health and will be more effective at signposting learners to the right support at the right time.

    Pilots in place in six local authorities and four local health board areas will continue operating until summer 2020. An evaluation contract is in place with an interim evaluation due December 2019 and final evaluation in December 2020.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The new curriculum for Wales is being developed by teachers and practitioners through a network of Pioneer Schools in partnership with the Welsh Government, regional consortia, Estyn, Qualifications Wales, higher education, business and other key partners.

    Curriculum for Wales 2022 is structured around six areas of learning and experience, one of which is Health and Well-being. Through the Health and Well-being Area of Learning and Experience, learners will gain knowledge and understanding of how their environment, including the online environment, mind and physical state affects their health, well-being and readiness to learn throughout their lives.

    Update 2019

    Online safety has been considered by the Pioneer Schools developing the new curriculum and is reflected in the what matters statements of a number of areas of learning and experience including Health and Well-being, and Science and Technology. The draft Curriculum for Wales 2022 was published for feedback on 30 April 2019. The feedback period ran until 19 July 2019 and the refined Curriculum for Wales 2022 will be made available in January 2020.

    One of the four purposes of the new curriculum is for learners to develop as healthy, confident individuals who know how to find the information and support to keep safe and well, and form positive relationships based upon trust and mutual respect. The Health and Well-being Area of Learning and Experience supports learners to process and respond to experiences online, make safe decisions when engaging online and to recognise unhealthy or harmful relationships online. Curriculum for Wales 2022 has more emphasis on equipping young people for life. Digital competence will be a cross-curricular theme, together with literacy and numeracy.

    In addition to digital competence, the Curriculum for Wales 2022 includes computation as a strand of learning within the Science and Technology Area of Learning and Experience. While this is focussed on developing understanding of the key concepts that underpin computer science, within that we expect the issue of online safety to be covered.

    Action status: In progress.

  • There are a range of digital stakeholder events that take place across Wales. These include:

    • the annual National Digital Learning Event – a national flagship event, aimed at teachers and those working in education in Wales, to raise the profile of digital learning, with a view to identifying and sharing exemplars of good practice and expertise in digital learning
    • HwbMeets – face-to-face teacher networking sessions that facilitate the sharing of best practice and enable teachers to learn from others; these are delivered in conjunction with regional consortia
    • Online Safety Briefing Sessions – SWGfL, as part of the UK Safer Internet Centre, will deliver Online Safety Briefing sessions in Wales.

    Update 2019

    The 2018 National Digital Learning Event took place at Celtic Manor, Newport on Wednesday 20 June 2018. The theme of the event was ‘Sharing digital practices to support an evolving curriculum’ and 229 delegates attended. The event was designed around a ‘Digital Marketplace’. There were 40 stands led by practitioners and experts (and 38 children) holding short, practical sessions with small groups of delegates. The stands provided innovative examples of how digital practices are being developed in schools across Wales. One stand was dedicated to online safety, and was hosted by Welsh Government officials and SWGfL. The aim of the stand was to raise awareness of the Online Safety Programme, the Online Safety Zone and the extensive suite of online safety resources.

    From the spring term 2020, four Regional Digital Learning Events, one run by each of the four regional consortia, will take place. These events replace the National Digital Learning Event and enable us to reach a wider education audience across Wales. The events are aimed at teachers and those working in education in Wales, to raise the profile of digital learning, with a view to identifying and sharing exemplars of good practice and expertise in digital learning. Plans are also in place to run similar events aimed at, and with sessions delivered by, learners.

    The regional consortia will continue to hold HwbMeets. As part of their remit, HwbMeets include aspects of online safety.

    During 2018–19 the Welsh Government supported the 11 ‘Online Safety Briefings’ delivered as part of the UK Safer Internet Centre outreach work promoting the sessions and their availability on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb.

    During 2019–20 the UK Safer Internet Centre will deliver ten ‘Online Safety Briefings’ in Wales giving up-to-date information on the latest online safety, trends, technologies, issues and research, as well as signposting delegates to resources and advice. The Welsh Government will continue to provide communications support to raise awareness of this offering from the UK Safer Internet Centre.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • Hwb, the digital learning platform for Wales, provides education stakeholders with access to a wide range of centrally-funded bilingual digital tools and resources to support the transformation of education practices.

    The Online Safety Zone was launched on Hwb on Safer Internet Day on 6 February 2017. The zone is the dedicated area on Hwb designed and developed to support exemplary online safety practice in education across Wales.

    The Online Safety Zone hosts a range of teaching resources on various online safety topics to help keep learners safe online. It provides access to sources of guidance and advice to learners, education practitioners, education professionals, governors, parents and carers, schools and further expert support. The zone also hosts a training events calendar to enable practitioners to sign up to online safety training sessions.

    Update 2019

    Hwb, the digital learning platform for Wales, provides education stakeholders with access to a wide range of centrally-funded bilingual digital tools and resources to support the transformation of education practices. Hwb has evolved to become the single strategic digital channel for education in Wales, hosting Curriculum for Wales 2022, professional development for staff and digital infrastructure support. Hwb is regularly used by over 96 per cent of schools in Wales.

    The Online Safety Zone on Hwb continues to be the one-stop-shop for bilingual online safety resources. Since its launch in 2017, the Online Safety Programme has published over 105 resources. This has included 66 playlist resources, three Safer Internet Day education packs, in addition to ten teacher guides and ten guides for parents and carers.

    The Online Safety Zone has received over 50,000 page views during 2018–19 reaching over 366,000 page views to date.

    During 2019–20, the Welsh Government will continue to create, host all online safety news, resources, guidance and information relating to the online safety in education programme in Wales. The Welsh Government will also undertake a review of the Online Safety Zone and will look at ways to enhance the current user experience.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • Safer Internet Day (SID) is celebrated globally in February each year to promote the safe and positive use of digital technology for children and young people and inspire a national conversation. The Welsh Government will continue to support this day annually. Safer Internet Day 2019 was held on 5 February 2019.

    Coordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre the celebration sees hundreds of organisations unite to raise awareness of online safety issues and run events and activities right across the UK.

    Update 2019

    Safer Internet Day (SID) 2019 took place on Tuesday 5 February 2019. The Global theme for the day was ‘SID together for a better internet’ and the UK theme was ‘Our internet, our choice: Understanding consent in a digital world’.

    On Thursday 8 November 2018 the UK Safer Internet Centre held the Safer Internet Day Stakeholder Planning Event at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff Bay. This event, attended by a range of stakeholders, provided an opportunity to hear directly from the UK Safer Internet Centre about what the SID 2019 campaign will involve, how they can support it and to exchange ideas about how they can get involved.

    Bilingual Safer Internet Day 2019: Education Packs were published on the Hwb Online Safety Zone, which includes a specially commissioned Safer Internet Day 2019: Supplementary education pack for schools, and information for parents and carers.

    The Minister for Education, Kirsty Williams AM, filmed a message of support for the day and issued a written statement to provide an update on online safety work being taken forward across Wales.

    Safer Internet Day (SID) 2020 will be held on Tuesday 11 February 2020. The global theme for the day is ‘Safer Internet Day: Together for a better internet’.

    Planning for Safer Internet Day has started already and campaign updates will be available on the dedicated Safer Internet Day page on Hwb.

    The Welsh Government, in partnership with the UK Safer Internet Centre, will hold an event on 13 November 2019 to introduce plans for the SID campaign and help schools and organisations get involved. The event will focus on what Safer Internet Day can do for your organisation, your employees or your school. More details are available on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Welsh Government’s @HwbNews twitter feed is extensively used to promote online safety activities. This includes information about upcoming online safety events and details of resources that have been published via the Online Safety Zone.

    Additionally, the education newsletter Dysg is also extensively used to promote online safety activities.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 the Welsh Government used a number of communications and social media platforms to raise awareness of online safety including the following.

    Online Safety Zone on Hwb

    Over 145news articles have been published on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb to promote and highlight the Online Safety Programme, training and resources available.

    Dysg

    The education newsletter Dysg has promoted online safety events and resources, including Safer Internet Day, with an audience reach of over 23,000 across all editions.

    Social media

    We have used the @HwbNews twitter account extensively to raise awareness of the Online Safety Programme. Items have also been shared on twitter via the Welsh Government’s education channels – @WG_Education and on the Education Wales Facebook page. The Minister for Education’s channel @wgmin_education has also promoted activity in relation to online safety on occasion.

    The parental engagement channel, Education begins at home @edubeginsathome and the Education begins at home Facebook page, has also highlighted online safety issues.

    To engage further, during 2019–20 the gov.wales website will feature the developments and resources from the Online Safety Programme.

    During 2019–20 the Welsh Government will continue to communicate and raise awareness of the extensive range of resources and various online safety events through the Welsh Government communications channels, newsletters and social media platforms.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • On a monthly basis SWGfL will continue to provide a bilingual online safety newsletter which is published by the Welsh Government on Hwb.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 the Welsh Government has published a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb. The newsletter provides a summary of the latest online safety news, resources and events, in addition to updates on Safer Internet Day and other pieces of interest, involved in the Online Safety Programme.

    The newsletter is provided by SWGfL who are currently contracted by the Welsh Government to run the online safety awareness-raising project in Wales.

    During 2019–20 the Welsh Government will continue to work with SWGfL to provide a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter and publish on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb. To register to receive the newsletter, please go to hwb.gov.wales/zones/online-safety/newsletter.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Welsh Government has published statutory guidance – Keeping learners safeto help support education services in delivering its statutory responsibilities to maintain a safe learning environment, and identify and respond to well-being concerns with other agencies, where necessary.

    This guidance is due to be refreshed to take consideration of developments in legislation and policy, including online safety, online bullying and sexting as appropriate.

    Update 2019

    Welsh Government officials worked closely with key stakeholders during 2018–19
    to revise and update the statutory guidance Keeping learners safe.

    The draft guidance Keeping learners safe has been published for full, public consultation during summer 2019. Policy leads will update the guidance in line with responses from the public consultation, and a final version will be published in spring 2020.

    The online safety section has been reviewed and updated in line with the rest of the guidance.

    Action status: In progress.

  • 'The Safeguarding Children and Young People from Sexual Exploitation' (2010) guidance aims to help teachers, health professionals, social workers, the police and other key practitioners in Wales to tackle sexual exploitation. The guidance also helps them to identify children at risk, equips them to protect these vulnerable children and to take action against the perpetrators.

    Update 2019

    A 12-week consultation on statutory guidance to safeguard children from child sexual exploitation was launched on 15 July 2019. The guidance includes advice on online grooming, and online abuse and exploitation.

    Action status: In progress.

  • A multi-agency task and finish group has been convened to develop refreshed statutory safeguarding guidance on child sexual exploitation. The guidance will be issued for formal consultation in autumn 2018 and will include information on online grooming and child sexual exploitation. The Welsh Government has provided funding to enable Cardiff and the Vale Safeguarding Board to review and develop National Protection Procedures. The Welsh Government is working with task and finish groups to develop practice guidance to be used in conjunction with National Protection Procedures this will include updating the All Wales Protocol on the Protection of Children from Abuse via Information Technology.

    Update 2019

    An all Wales practice guide on safeguarding children from online abuse has been developed with a multi-agency group chaired by Colin Turner, formally of CEOP. This will be issued in November 2019 with the Wales Safeguarding Procedures on behalf of the Safeguarding Children Boards.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The web filtering standards are a common set of agreed standards for internet access that provide schools with the tools to make informed choices about appropriate filtered internet provision, whether delivered by the local authority or another provider. The standards support schools to be fit for twenty-first century learning and teaching while still safeguarding children and young people.

    The standards also include the prerequisites for Hwb tools, which outline the digital requirements for schools to get the most from the digital learning platform toolset.

    Update 2019

    The Recommended web filtering standards for schools in Wales document was updated and published in February 2018 and is available for schools in Wales. The key aim of the web filtering standards outlined within the document is that they will enable access to websites that support the effective delivery of teaching and learning in schools.

    The standards will provide learners with the opportunity to learn within a safe, responsible and supportive environment, and prevent access to inappropriate content. An effective online safety programme of education should supplement this guidance to teach children and young people the importance of responsible and considerate online behaviours.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • In 2003 the Welsh Government published non-statutory guidance to help tackle bullying in schools in Wales – Respecting Others: Anti-Bullying Guidance. In 2011, the guidance was updated and expanded to address five key areas of bullying. One of these key areas is online bullying. Working with key stakeholders we are currently reviewing Respecting others to ensure the guidance continues to provide effective support to local authorities, schools, parents, carers and learners. The revised guidance will be published for consultation in 2018.

    Update 2019

    The revised draft anti-bullying guidance and toolkit was published for consultation between November 2018 and February 2019. The summary of responses was published in May 2019.

    The revised guidance sets out the importance of taking a whole-school approach, and proactively challenging and preventing bullying. We want to ensure the online bullying aspects of guidance link closely with our broader aims of online safety and we have worked closely with SWGfL to achieve this. The revised guidance will be available in the new school year.

    Action status: In progress.

  • In addition to revising the Respecting others guidance we are also working with key stakeholders to look at what strategies and resources are needed to support delivery of the anti-bullying message in education settings. A review of the materials that are currently available is underway and, based on the findings of that review, we will consider developing further resources to support education practitioners to address bullying.

    Update 2019

    The new anti-bullying guidance will be accompanied by an online toolkit hosted on Hwb. The toolkit will offer resources and support for practitioners, learners and parents/carers, and will be available in the new school year. The toolkit will be a live resource that will grow over time with new resources added as they become available.

    Action status: In progress.

  • 'The Respect and resilience – Developing community cohesion' (2016) guidance aims to support the development of community cohesion and prevent violent extremism in all secondary schools, pupil referral units, special schools and other educational settings.

    Update 2019

    The Welsh Government will maintain Respect and resilience – Developing community cohesion issued January 2016 for local authorities, headteachers and governing bodies of maintained schools, headteachers and governing bodies of voluntary aided and foundation schools, teachers in charge of pupil referral units, childcare providers, church diocesan authorities, teacher training institutions, Local Safeguarding Children Board Chairs, Community Safety Partnerships,
    and organisations that have a lead responsibility for safeguarding children and community cohesion.

    Respect and resilience – Developing community cohesion was last updated in January 2019. The Resilience Team in the Welsh Government continue to share information in respect of good practice in order to support schools in recognition of their role in developing and supporting strategic approaches to promoting and maintaining community cohesion and preventing violent extremism via the All Wales Prevent Group which forms part of the Wales CONTEST and Extremism Board.  (Additional information may be found under Action 46.)

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • From built-in digital media players in cars to smart phones and tablets, children and young people have more access to electronic media than ever before. Technology is constantly changing but the role of parents and carers in providing safe, caring limits remains unchanged over time. While there are a number of surveys which report on children’s screen time, electronic device usage and internet use, they do not include children age seven or under. There is very little data which is specific to Wales or that investigates the extent to which parents and carers engage with their children during screen time use.

    The National Survey for Wales (NSW) is a study of a representative sample of over 10,000 people across Wales. The results are used by the Welsh Government to help make Wales a better place to live. The survey covers a range of topics with a focus on well-being and people’s views on public services. In the National Survey for Wales 2017–18, the Welsh Government addressed questions about screen time use to respondents who are parents and carers with children under seven. Results from this survey for parents and carers with children in the age group 3–7 will be available in summer 2018. These questions will also be included in the NSW for 2018–19 to cover parents and carers with children aged between one and five, and the results will be available in summer 2019.

    Exploring current usage in Wales is the first step in shaping our policy in this area, which may include the development of advice and guidance to the family support workforce and parents/carers directly.

    Update 2019

    The Welsh Government’s ‘Parenting. Give it Time.’ campaign published an information sheet ‘Creating a balance between ‘Family Time’ and ‘Screen Time’ which details how to balance children’s (up to the age of five) use of technology
    with access to family time and interaction. A survey, previously undertaken with parents/carers with children under five, found their child’s use of technology was one of their concerns. Experts recommend limiting young children’s daily screen time. This is because of the potential impacts on their physical health, particularly their vision and posture, and also their language and social skills. They recommend that:

    • infants aged 18 months and younger should not be exposed to any digital media
    • screen time should be limited to one hour per day for children aged two to five
    • children of any age (and adults) should avoid screen time before bed as the light emitted can make it harder to fall asleep.

    We will be expanding ‘Parenting. Give it time.’ to include children and young people up to the age of 18 by December 2020. We will continue to keep in view the current research published for appropriate screen time for children, as well as work closely with the professionals in the relevant fields to support the expansion.

    Action status: In progress.

  • 360 degree safe Cymru is a bilingual online safety self-assessment tool which has been designed to allow all maintained schools, local authorities and other education settings in Wales to assess and review their online safety policy and practice. The tool guides schools through 28 aspects of online safety, helping them to collaborate, report, and progress their online safety provision.

    The 360 degree safe Cymru self-assessment tool provides:

    • information that can influence the production or review of online safety policies and develop good practice
    • a process for identifying strengths and areas for improvement
    • opportunities for commitment and involvement from the whole school
    • a continuum for schools to discuss how they might move from a basic level provision for online safety to practice that is aspirational and innovative.

    The content of the tool and associated policy templates was updated in January 2017. 

    Update 2019

    In November 2018 the 360 degree safe Cymru tool received a major update, introducing a new design and adding functionality for users. The home page of the tool now features a graph which illustrates the school’s current progress in the tool, and benchmarks its performance against national standards and that of other schools. Further reports allow schools to check on their progress history in the too, over time.

    Alongside, all template policies and tool content was updated, and new guidance was included around data management and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

    The tool is currently used by 1,426 schools, with the majority having completed all the tool’s aspects. Schools are encouraged to revisit their review, and currently nearly 60 per cent of registered schools have used the tool within the past twelve months.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Welsh Government recognises the importance of providing reliable information on the broad range of online safety issues to provide support and guidance for children and young people. It also recognises the importance of these resources being engaging, age appropriate and pitched to the appropriate age group.

    There are many good quality, online safety resources created by various experts across the sector, however most are available in English only. To help address this, the Welsh Government have contracted a specialist provider, SWGfL, until 2019 to develop a range of high-quality, bilingual online safety resources for primary and secondary learners.

    The Welsh Government will explore what online safety resources are available and how they can be tailored for home-educating parents and carers. The Hwb Online Safety Zone provides education stakeholders with access to a wide range of online safety resources. Content on the zone is regularly reviewed and gaps in provision identified and prioritised for future development.

    The numbers of home-educated children continue to increase and many parents and carers will rely on the internet and online resources and tools to support home educating their children. We want to ensure we raise awareness of the potential risks with parents and carers as well as how to mitigate against these risks.

    Update 2019

    During 2018–19 the Welsh Government continued to build on the suite of bilingual resources of different online safety topics. This included the creation and publication of playlists on the following topics.

    For each playlist there was a version suitable for primary school learners and a separate one for secondary school learners.

    In 2019–20 the Welsh Government will develop and publish a new series of playlist resources tackling the following issues:

    • screen time, technology and mental health
    • consent in an online world
    • misinformation
    • illegal and offensive content
    • online hate speech.

    For each topic, two playlists will be developed – one for primary school learners and another for secondary school learners.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Hwb Online Safety Zone provides education stakeholders with access to a wide range of online safety resources. Content on the zone is regularly reviewed and gaps in provision identified and prioritised for future development.

    The numbers of home-educated children continue to increase and many parents and carers will rely on the internet and online resources and tools to support home-educating their children. We want to ensure we raise awareness of the potential risks with parents and carers as well as how to mitigate against these risks.

    Update 2019

    The Welsh Government will create a page for home-educating families to use on Hwb, which will include information on how to access examinations and universal services, as well as links to learning resources such as Welsh language, English, mathematics, science and online safety.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The Welsh Government will ensure practitioners have access to a range of high-quality bilingual resources to support the delivery of online safety education in schools.

    During 2017–18 the Welsh Government piloted a new series ‘A teacher’s guide to … ’. Each guide in the series covers a different topical issue in the current online safety landscape and includes useful hints and tips for education practitioners. The guides also signpost to other sources for further reading and provide a range of practical suggestions and ideas.

    Having received positive feedback on the series, the Welsh Government will fund another series of these guides during 2018–19 covering relevant topics that stakeholders have identified as current and necessary.

    Update 2019

    During 2018–19 the Welsh Government developed new resources to support education practitioners deliver online safety education in the classroom.

    This included continuing to build on the existing suite of bilingual resources on addressing a range of online safety issues including the publication of the following playlists on Hwb.

    In 2019–20 the Welsh Government will develop and publish a new series of playlist resources tackling the following issues:

    • screen time, technology and mental health
    • consent in an online world
    • misinformation
    • illegal and offensive content
    • online hate speech.

    Playlists provide a way of collating content from a range of web sources, along with your own materials and quiz questions, into a single resource that can be shared with other users. These can also be turned into an assignment, which will collect the quiz scores from any user who completes the assignment, and display these for the teacher in a markbook.

    Using Online Safety Zone playlists effectively can offer education practitioners and their learners a reliable, safe and easily accessible way of organising and sharing resources on Hwb.

    To further support education practitioners, we have issued another series of
    ‘A teacher’s guide to … ’.  These publications aim to provide an insight on a focused issue in online safety.

    During 2018–19, the following issues were made available.

    During 2019–20, the third series of ‘A teacher’s guide to … ’ will be issued covering the following titles.

    • A teacher’s guide to sources of support for online safety problems.
    • A teacher’s guide to use online safety playlists in the classroom.
    • A teacher’s guide to the impact of the internet on mental health.
    • A teacher’s guide to understanding the role of the internet in radicalisation
      and extremism.
    • A teacher’s guide to recognising and tackling online bullying.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The role of parents and carers in keeping learners safe online is significant. To support schools to engage with parents and carers to help them to develop their online skills and safety awareness, the Welsh Government will continue to fund SWGfL to develop new materials for education practitioners to host online safety sessions for parents and carers.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19, the Welsh Government published four new education packs for schools to deliver workshops to parents and carers about social media, gaming and online bullying – two for primary-aged learners and two for secondary-aged learners.

    This set of workshop materials contains all a school needs to run a workshop session on these specific topics for parents and carers. No specialist knowledge is required, as the resource comes complete with guidance notes and instructions for the presenter, an editable presentation, a resource sheet, and a parents and carers tips sheet.

    Action status: Delivered.

  • Common Sense Media and SWGfL are specialists in providing guidance and resources to support online safety and digital literacy. The Welsh Government will continue to work with these organisations to ensure education stakeholders in Wales have access to the latest online safety and digital literacy resources.

    Update 2019

    Since 2014, education practitioners across Wales have had access to a range of useful resources to support their teaching about online safety within the classroom.

    Working with Common Sense Media and SWGfL the Welsh Government have adapted, contextualised and translated sixty-five lesson plans to support practitioners in delivering the Digital Competence Framework (DCF).

    This Online Safety Resource for Wales consists of five lesson plans per year group, from Foundation Phase through to Year 13. They cover eight key areas of online safety including digital footprints, creative credit and copyright, self-image and identity, and relationships communication.

    Action status: Delivered.

  • The Online Safety Resource for Wales is a set of lesson plans that schools can use to teach online safety and digital literacy to all year groups, from Foundation Phase to Key Stage 5. They are based on Common Sense Media’s free online safety resource, which empowers learners to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly in our digital world.

    Update 2019

    Following further work by the Welsh Government on the Online Safety Resource for Wales in September 2018 the Welsh Government published the bilingual lesson plans in playlists format. Users can navigate to the lesson plan they want and are available to download in either English or Welsh.

    Action status: Delivered.

  • In December 2015, the Welsh Government launched a new educational resource pack – Hidden: An Educational Resource on Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) – which was developed with Barnardo’s Cymru. This resource was aimed at education practitioners to help them to tackle the difficult issue of child sexual exploitation in the classroom.

    In light of feedback from stakeholders following training on the Hidden resource, there was concern that children younger than 14 were at risk of child sexual exploitation, but the resource would not be appropriate to use with this age group.

    The Welsh Government has commissioned the development of an additional child sexual exploitation (CSE) resource for Year 6 learners. This resource is part-funded by the Welsh Government and the four police regions across Wales.

    Update 2019

    The All Wales School Liaison Core Programme (AWSLCP) produced a resource to be delivered in schools on child exploitation – a short film called ‘Griff’s story

    The film will be used by School Beat Officers to run sessions on child sexual exploitation (CSE).

    The resource was officially launched by the Minister for Education, Kirsty Williams AM, in March 2019 and has been piloted across a number of schools.

    The resource will be rolled out to all learners in Year 6 from September 2019.

    The film is accessible to all learners and you can watch it online at www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iz07P2Yu-bQ.

    Action status: Delivered.

  • The Welsh Government has commissioned the development of a safeguarding assessment and audit tool. The audit tool will support education settings to develop their safeguarding processes and promote national consistency in exercising duties in line with the Keeping learners safe guidance. The audit tool will be rolled out in 2018–19 and the Welsh Government will commission an evaluation of the tool at the end of the first year. The long term-intention, following this evaluation, is to embed the toolkit into the Keeping learners safe guidance.

    Update 2019

    During 2019–20 the safeguarding audit tool will be included in the revised Keeping learners safe guidance as a matter of effective practice for all education settings. The purpose of the safeguarding audit tool is to support all education settings to review their safeguarding arrangements. The audit tool is intended to help education settings to identify strengths and areas for improvement in their safeguarding arrangements, and to ensure they are exercising their legal safeguarding obligations in line with Keeping learners safe statutory guidance.

    The toolkit should be used to support a whole-setting approach to safeguarding and provide a benchmark against which to work to continually develop and improve.

    Action status: In progress.

  • The NSPCC Net Aware resources are guides for parents and carers about social networks; these are currently available in English only. The Welsh Government will work with the NSPCC to host a new bilingual version of these resources.

    Update 2019

    The Net Aware resources are guides created by the NSPCC and O2 for parents/carers of the most popular sites, apps and games that young people use. The content is based on reviews from young people, parents and carers. It provides parents and carers with the information they need to understand their child’s online world and help keep them safe.

    In 2018 the Welsh Government worked with the NSPCC to create a series of ten bilingual playlists most summarising the Net Aware resources. The resources cover areas such as privacy and age ratings.

    The following resources are hosted on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb.

    Action status: Delivered.

  • Local authorities in Wales are required to make reasonable provision of counselling services for children and young people aged between 11 and 18 in their area, and for learners in Year 6 of primary school. Some local authorities also choose to offer online counselling to complement their face-to-face counselling service.

    The Welsh Government is working with stakeholders to update the School-based Counselling Operating Toolkit (2011), which is aimed at counsellors, managers of counselling services, local authorities and schools. The revised toolkit will include advice on online counselling services, making it clear that when online counselling is offered it takes into account:

    • the need to operate on a safe and secure platform
    • child protection and safeguarding requirements
    • the client’s suitability for the requested platform and their age, including Gillick competency (a term used to decide whether a child (under 16) is able to consent to their own medical treatment, without the need for parental permission or knowledge), and in-depth understanding of issues around consent and confidentiality
    • protocols and technical mechanisms for supporting clients in an emergency
    • use of social media.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 a draft toolkit has been informally developed and consulted on with key stakeholders including local authority counselling providers and the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy. A formal public consultation is planned for later in 2019 and final publication in 2020.

    Action status: In progress.

  • A programme of training events was delivered between April 2017 and March 2018 and included 36 bilingual half-day events across Wales covering the following topics.

    • Safe use of social media and online abuse of teachers.
    • Online safety for designated senior persons for child protection.
    • Understanding and effectively tackling online bullying and online hate.

    Through a contract with SWGfL, the Welsh Government will continue to develop and deliver an online safety training programme. The 2018–19 programme will include
    36 half-day themed bilingual training sessions on the following.

    • The internet and mental health.
    • Harmful content online.
    • GDPR and implications for schools.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 twenty-four half-day themed training sessions were offered to education practitioners and professionals. Of the 24 training sessions offered, 15 were delivered to a total of 165 delegates. The training covered the following themes:

    • the internet and mental health
    • GDPR and implications for schools.

    Upon a mid-year review of the training programme, it was agreed that to maximise uptake and the attendance numbers the remainder of the 2018–19 training programme would be tailored to each regional consortia’s training priority needs. Each regional consortia approached their training offer differently, for instance some chose to train their challenge advisors and some focussed on 360 degree safe Cymru. Fourteen training sessions took place to 547 delegates.

    Eleven Online Safety Live events took place delivering an overview on online safety issues and challenges to 158 people. Sessions were held in Porthcawl, Llanelli, Colwyn Bay, Felinfach, Cardiff, Deeside, Anglesey, Aberystwyth, Caerphilly, Monmouth and Sully.

    In January 2019, SWGfL also delivered training to 100 School Beat Officers over four sessions in Colwyn Bay, Carmarthen, Blackwood and Bridgend. In total 970 received training through this programme.

    During 2019–20 a bespoke programme of 18 days training is to be delivered to the regional consortia. This training programme will be agreed with each regional consortium digital leader.

    Action status: In progress.

  • To help embed the Keeping learners safe guidance, the Welsh Government published two e-learning modules and a case studies module, examining specific safeguarding situations which align closely with the content and the format of the Keeping learners safe guidance. The modules were launched on Hwb during Safeguarding Week, in November 2016. The modules are for all staff within an educational setting and comprise of:

    • an introductory module, which outlines what safeguarding is, laws, policies and the importance of creating a safe environment as well as busting some common myths
    • a module to help all staff members understand how to safeguard learners, common processes and the role of the designated senior person (DSP)
    • an interactive module to assess their learning through case studies – designed to be completed alone, the case studies can also be taken out of the module and used during INSET days for a group of practitioners to discuss.

    Two new modules have been added to the Keeping learners safe suite, with a specific focus on online safety. Like the previous modules, these are publicly available on Hwb through a playlist. The new modules have been developed to empower all education practitioners and governors with a sound introduction to online safety and how this impacts on safeguarding learners.

    They provide a background to the safeguarding issues that can occur online and detail some of the apps and services young people use. Each playlist also contains
    a range of links to useful and relevant documents and guidance.

    Update 2019

    In 2018–19 the Welsh Government continued to promote the Keeping learners safe online safety training modules drawing attention to them on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb. To date the modules have received over 16,000 page views.

    The Welsh Government will continue to promote the Keeping learners safe modules. Using social media and the Online Safety Zone we will continue to highlight the modules and their aims during 2019–20, and will encourage educational practitioners and governors to complete the modules as part of their individual professional development.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Welsh Government’s Digital Inclusion Policy focuses predominately on adults aged 16+, specifically the following four priority groups:

    • older people
    • disabled people
    • those living in social housing
    • the economically inactive and unemployed.

    Trust and security concerns remain a key barrier to many embracing the internet and other technologies. Addressing basic security concerns, and highlighting the precautions people should take, can increase new users’ confidence in making the most of the vast opportunities the digital world offers. Non-users or limited users of digital technology are missing out on access to improved digital public services, better deals and cheaper goods, and improving their well-being, access to social connections, financial security and health.

    Through our Digital Communities Wales: Digital Confidence, Health and Well-being Programme (July 2019 to June 2022) we will embed online safety within our training to front-line staff, volunteers and Digital Heroes (young volunteers). In addition, working with the National Cyber Security Centre, we will look to signpost individuals and families to cyber security advice.

    The Welsh Government will ensure online safety is included as a key topic in all digital inclusion training material for staff and volunteers, for example:

    • front-line staff training
    • Welsh Baccalaureate Digital Inclusion Community Challenge
    • Digital Heroes (young volunteers)
    • Digital Companions (peer-to-peer volunteers).

    Update 2019

    Training provided by our £2m per annum Digital Communities Wales: Digital Confidence, Health and Well-being Programme includes tips on how to stay safe and secure online, including protecting privacy, which is passed onto citizens by front-line staff and volunteers.

    Online safety forms a key part of the training our 4,600 Digital Heroes (young volunteers) have received to enable them to help older people in hospitals and care homes stay in touch with friends and family or access key online public services, ensuring these individuals are not left behind.

    We have funded the Welsh translation of the ‘Learn My Way’ online basic digital skills platform, which includes resources on keeping your personal data safe, keeping your device safe and being safe online. The platform supports individuals to develop their basic digital skills free of charge, at a pace and location convenient to them.

    Action status: Ongoing.

  • The Welsh Government will continue to work with The Welsh Extremism and Counter Terrorism Unit (WECTU), headteachers and safeguarding leads to provide appropriate training on matters relating to counter-terrorism, and ensure schools have procedures and processes in place, and that they are familiar with these procedures and processes. A key feature of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 is a duty on schools and colleges to ‘have due regard, in the exercise of their functions, to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’. The UK Government published the Prevent Duty Guidance for England and Wales for specified bodies including education providers.

    As part of Prevent there is a duty on schools to ensure that staff are trained to identify those at risk of radicalisation.

    To support the implementation of Prevent the Welsh Government has:

    • published and updated the version of our guidance document Respect and resilience – Developing community cohesion and this includes an associated self-assessment toolkit; the guidance ensures that schools in Wales have information to help them meet the legal requirements of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015
    • published Trust me Cymru, which is a bilingual version of the classroom resource created by Childnet as part of the UK Safer Internet Centre that tackles online bias and propaganda.

    The then Cabinet Secretary for Education wrote to local authorities seeking assurances that schools have appropriate procedures in place.

    Update 2019

    While counter-terrorism is not a devolved matter, the Welsh Government continues to work closely with the UK Prevent Team and Welsh Extremism and Counter Terrorist Unit (WECTU).

    Within the three current Prevent training modules available online, Welsh translation is available for the first two. You can download Welsh versions of the training
    course and view videos with Welsh subtitles at www.elearning.prevent.homeoffice.gov.uk/edu/screen1.html#

    The Prevent training review will ensure that future training is available bilingually.

    Prevent Awareness

    An e-learning package introduction to the Prevent duty, with an aim of safeguarding vulnerable people from being radicalised to supporting terrorism or becoming terrorists themselves.
    www.elearning.prevent.homeoffice.gov.uk

    Prevent Referrals

    This package builds on the Prevent awareness e-learning training. It is designed to make sure that when we share a concern that a vulnerable individual may be being radicalised, that the referral is robust, informed and with good intention, and that the response to that concern is considered, and proportionate. www.elearning.prevent.homeoffice.gov.uk/preventreferrals

    Channel Awareness

    This training package is for anyone who may be asked to contribute to, sit on, or even run a Channel Panel. It is aimed at all levels, from a professional asked to input and attend for the first time, to a member of staff new to their role and organising a panel meeting.

    www.elearning.prevent.homeoffice.gov.uk/channelawareness

    Prevent e-learning portal

    The UK Government is currently in the process of working with a contractor to identify changes to the portal to comply with Government Digital Standards. A number of user interviews have been carried out to understand the user journey and highlight improvements to enhance the training experience. The next phase of the project will be to undertake the initial changes and carry out further consultation/user interviews where the Welsh Government and partner Prevent colleagues will have the opportunity to provide an input to the process. The Welsh Government will keep partner organisations updated on progress and timescales so that they may provide representation going forward. It is during this phase that the Welsh language requirements will be reviewed.

    Prevent Training Manual (dated March 2016)

    A review of third party training provision and products is currently taking place.
    As part of the review, a training standards document will be produced for use by suppliers, and those purchasing training. This will provide sectors with assurance when purchasing training, but will also ensure that providers offer high-quality products that meet the Prevent agenda. A consultation will take place on the standards in due course.

    WECTU work closely with Welsh Government leads on the following.

    • Getting On Together (GOT) linked products – periodically linking in with the GOT project when providing input to teachers etc. on threat/risk referral processes.
      The GOT Project has modules which are used in schools in a number of local authorities in Wales. There are modules for secondary school learners and for learners under 11. There is also a European link through Erasmus-funded links.
    • Getting On Together (GOT) linked products – periodically linking in with the GOT project when providing input to teachers etc. on threat/risk referral processes.
      The GOT Project has modules which are used in schools in a number of local authorities in Wales. There are modules for secondary school learners and for learners under 11. There is also a European link through Erasmus-funded links.
    • Schools Beat Officer’s extremism inputs – there are 65 School Beat Officers across Wales already acting as a contact point for schools around this agenda and an improved module involving filming of an introductory ‘scene’ is in progress.
    • Overlaps to cohesion/hate crime inputs – due to the cross-cutting nature of the agenda, Prevent work links to inputs provided both via some non-government organisations, e.g. Show racism the red card, and the broader safeguarding agenda (linking to online safety, etc.).
    • Cardiff Schools – Cardiff is the only Home Office Prevent priority area in Wales and as such benefits from funding of Prevent coordinator and extremism leads.
    • Emerging initiatives – Welsh Government education policy contacts have supported briefings from WECTU to the First Minister around this agenda. WECTU will continue to support Welsh Government partners through the provision of information as they seek to develop/improve delivery of learning around the Prevent and safeguarding agenda.
    • Schools lockdown – understanding of the Protect/Prepare agenda often overlaps with Prevent and the consideration of school lockdown and reporting arrangements.

    Action status: Ongoing.


In 2019, the Welsh Government is building on previous work and exploring new areas of work which seeks to positively impact on keeping children and young people safe online. These fifteen new actions are new to the Online safety action plan for children and young people in Wales 2019.

  • The Welsh Government provides funding for the All Wales Schools Liaison Core Programme (AWSLCP) in partnership with the police. The programme delivers education on substance misuse and wider community and personal safety issues, including online safety, at all key stages of the curriculum among a range of other lessons.

    Discussions are ongoing between officials and the police to examine at how the programme will look beyond 2020 taking into account other youth and early intervention programmes. As part of this, the programme is currently being reviewed with the police leading on this. The Welsh Government will work with partners on considering the recommendations from the review of the programme and, in particular, how it will complement the work undertaken on curriculum reform.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • The Cyber First programmes from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) provide young people with the opportunity to learn more about cyber security. We are keen to ensure that young people in Wales are aware of and able to benefit from these courses.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • Priority sections of advice on the Get Safe Online website, some of which will be relevant to children and young people, have been translated into Welsh using Welsh Government funding.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • Recognising the universal issues online safety entails, the Welsh Government will engage with Scotland, Northern Ireland and England to share good practice and lessons learned, as well as exploring any opportunities for collaboration.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • The Welsh Government will work with Google and ParentZone to support the roll out of their online safety education programme Be Internet Legends – a programme which seeks to empower children aged between 7 and 11 to be safe and confident explorers of the online world.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • Working with the National Advisory Group for Suicide and Self-harm and Swansea University we will produce online guidance for teachers and other professionals aimed at normalising conversations with young people on self-harm and suicide for publication during 2019–20. This will be supplemented by further guidance in
    2020–21, commencing with a toolkit designed by and for young people to improve knowledge around self-harm postings online, the impact of online bullying and empathetic bystander interventions.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • The Click CEOP button is an asset of the National Crime Agency’s CEOP Command. The National Crime Agency is committed to protecting the public from serious and organised crime, and CEOP's role is to tackle the sexual abuse and exploitation of children, both online and offline. CEOP pursue those who sexually exploit and abuse children, prevent people becoming involved in child sexual exploitation, protect children from becoming victims of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse, and prepare interventions to reduce the impact of child sexual exploitation and abuse through safeguarding and child protection work. The Education Team at CEOP deliver the Thinkuknow education programme that aims to empower and protect children and young people from sexual abuse and exploitation.

    Thinkuknow includes films, animations, websites, presentations and lesson plans to enable professionals to explore difficult and sensitive issues safely with children and young people. The animations/film resources are accompanied by toolkits and delivery guidance documents to help professionals explore their themes with children and young people.

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • Through the British-Irish Council digital inclusion work sector, we will work collaboratively across administrations to develop a set of resources aimed at those aged 16. These resources will follow the branding of ‘Be Safe. Discover. Connect.’ and form a series of three infographics to each, containing tips for ‘Be Safe’, e.g. using a secure password and carrying out software updates; ‘Discover’, e.g. using Google Earth to explore; ‘Connect’, e.g. using public Wi-Fi and being a good online citizen. These resources will be developed over the coming 18 months.

     

    This action will sit in the ‘Collaboration’ section going forward.

  • The ‘This is Not Love. This is Control’ campaign is part of the Welsh Government’s long-standing commitment to raising awareness of and challenging attitudes to Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence sin Wales.

    The Welsh Government campaign ‘This is Not Love. This is Control’ aims to help people identify coercive control behaviours. Coercive control is a form of abuse – it can be subtle, making it difficult to identify and to recognise as wrong and abusive. Those experiencing it are often left feeling belittled and isolated. The campaign encourages those experiencing coercive control, who are in an unhealthy relationship, as well as concerned others to contact the Live Fear Free 24/7 helpline and online chat for advice and support.

    In September, the Welsh Government rolled out the first phase of the campaign specifically targeting the messaging to the experiences of young people aged 19–21. Campaign activities were directed mainly at university students to coincide with Freshers’ Week across Wales. The next stage of the campaign will be aimed specifically at 16 to 18-year-olds and those close to them, to highlight the issue of coercive control in relationships.

    The campaign aims to:

    • highlight what healthy relationships looks like by promoting/focusing on healthy and unhealthy controlling behaviours
    • help young people recognise controlling behaviours as wrong and abusive
    • empower perpetrators to change behaviour and seek help
    • shift the focus from victim blaming and shaming
    • help bystanders to identify these behaviours, recognise them as abuse and take appropriate action if they suspect it is taking place.

    This action will sit in the ‘Communication and promotion’ section going forward.

  • In June 2019 the Welsh Government launched the Youth Work Strategy for Wales, which will be underpinned by an implementation plan that will be published in October 2019. One of the strategy’s aims is to ensure youth work is accessible and inclusive, including through both physical and online services and provision. The Welsh Government will, as part of a combined action from the Youth Work Strategy and the Online Safety Action Plan, ensure that those working in the sector are both aware of the online safety resources that are currently freely available to them and consider any additional resources that could be needed.

    This action will sit in the ‘Communication and promotion’ section going forward.

  • The Welsh Government’s Programme for Government ‘Taking Wales Forward
    2016–21’ includes a commitment to develop a cross-government strategy on loneliness and isolation.

    The ‘Connected Communities’ strategy, which will be published later this year,  marks the first step in changing how we think and act upon loneliness and unwanted social isolation within government, communities and as individuals. It will:

    • set out a vision of the kind of society we want to see, where individuals and communities feel connected
    • define what we mean by loneliness and social isolation
    • set out our key priorities and aims in tackling these issues and how we all can work together to play a part in promoting well-being and building a more connected and inclusive Wales.

    The strategy will focus on the role that government can play and how it supports local authorities, public services and the third sector, as well as communities and individuals, to play their part and facilitate people’s social connections.

    For children and younger people, the internet and digital technology is an integral part of their lives. However, research highlights the potential disadvantages of social media for young people which can be an avenue for bullying, harassment and social pressure that can cause, or contribute to, a child’s or young person’s sense of isolation and loneliness.

    The strategy identifies the key role of schools in building emotional and psychological resilience in children and young people and outlines how the Welsh Government intends to support a whole school approach to emotional and mental well-being.

    This action will sit in the ‘Guidance and policy’ section going forward.

  • Each year, the survey involves face-to-face interviews with around 12,000 randomly selected people aged 16 and over across Wales. It covers topics from a wide range of Welsh Government policy areas and outcomes of the survey directly feed into policy and delivery decisions.

    Questions about online safety will be asked of the parents/carers of children aged
    5 to 15. The topics will include what steps parents/carers take to manage their children’s internet use, whether teachers talk to their children about internet safety, and how parents would seek advice about information safety.

    This action will sit in the ‘Research’ section going forward.

  • In 2019–20 the Welsh Government, in partnership with SWGfL, will undertake a gap analysis to establish requirements for an online safety resource for learners with additional learning needs (ALN). Following scoping work and analysis, six online safety lesson plans for learners with ALN will be developed – three for primary school learners and three for secondary school learners in Wales.

    This action will sit in the ‘Resources’ section going forward.

  • In 2019–20 the Welsh Government will develop and publish an online safety toolkit for practitioners working in early years settings. This toolkit will be based and adapted from SWGfL’s early years toolkit. It will aim to highlight and endorse best practice for professionals working with very young children and managing the risks associated with online technologies. The toolkit will contain templates for acceptable use policies and procedures that early years settings can customise to their needs.

    This action will sit in the ‘Resources’ section going forward.

  • In 2019–20 the Welsh Government will take a digital approach to reaching parents and carers. Working with a range of experts in their prospective fields, SWGfL will create a series of short films for parents and carers to offer help and support on some of the most concerning online safety issues. The ‘Start the conversation’ film series aims to offer advice and tips to parents and carers on the following topics:

    • screen time
    • pornography
    • sexting
    • grooming
    • online bullying
    • radicalisation and extremism.

    These short films will complement the ‘A family guide to … ’ series (see Action 1) and will be available on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb.

    This action will sit in the ‘Resources’ section going forward.


1.    Advice and support

Status

1.1

In recognition of the important role parents, carers and extended families play in keeping their children safe online, the Welsh Government will continue to provide bilingual guidance on various online safety issues to support them in keeping their families safe online.

Ongoing.

1.2

The Welsh Government will continue share tips and advice with parents and carers about the safe uses of screen time through our ‘Parenting. Give it time.’ campaign website and Facebook pages which will extended to parents and carers with children up to age 18.

Ongoing.

1.3

The Welsh Government will develop and provide bilingual online safety guidance and resources for school governors to promote further understanding of online safety issues and to help them in their responsibility to keep learners in their school safe online.

Ongoing.

1.4

The Welsh Government will host the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Command on Hwb to promote the National Crime Agency’s button for children and young people, parents and carers, education practitioners and professionals, and governors to report any concerns about online sexual abuse.

Delivered.

2.   Collaboration

Status

2.1

The Welsh Government will continue to build and support the National Online Safety Network, drawing together expertise from the local authorities and regional consortia to share good practice and to build a sustainable, consistent and rigorous approach to online safety across Wales.

Closed.

2.2

The Welsh Government will work with UK Safer Internet Centre to support the delivery of online safety events including the annual Safer Internet Day stakeholder preparation session and Online Safety Live briefings.

Ongoing.

2.3

The Welsh Government will engage with the UK Government on the development of a UK Internet Safety Strategy and the Online Harms White Paper.

Ongoing.

2.4

The Welsh Government will continue to participate in the Executive Board of the UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS) and will become an active member of the UKCIS Education Working Group to ensure Wales is represented at a UK level.

Ongoing.

2.5

The Welsh Government will continue to support the National Safeguarding in Education Group, to draw together local authority leads and other partners to share good practice and complete project work in safeguarding. Officials from the Welsh Government will attend to represent the Hwb online safety programme of work.

Ongoing.

2.6

The Welsh Government will continue to engage with the Personal and Social Education (PSE) Advisory Group, considering online safety issues, as appropriate. The PSE Advisory Group will continue to act as a quality assurance for PSE-type lessons when required.

Ongoing.

2.7

Online safety will play a key role in the future of relationships and sexuality education following the recommendations put forward by the Sex and Relationships Education Expert Panel in March 2017.

In progress.

2.8

The Welsh Government will promote the use of the Digital Competence Framework by continuing to work with schools to embed the necessary digital skills, knowledge and attitudes across the whole curriculum to protect learners online.

Ongoing.

2.9

The Welsh Government will continue to provide funding through the Regional School Improvement Grant to enable the regional consortia to actively promote digital citizenship and the safe and responsible use of digital technology.

In progress.

2.10

The Welsh Government will participate in the Wales Internet Safety Partnership (WISP) to provide updates on online safety work programmes and discuss online safety issues.

Ongoing.

2.11

The Welsh Government will continue to review and monitor the impact of the Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Act 2015 and local authorities’ duties in relation to education provision.

Closed.

2.12

The Welsh Government will explore how to strengthen online safety provision in education other than at school (EOTAS) services, including pupil referral units (PRUs).

In progress.

2.13

The Welsh Government’s Health and Education portfolios will jointly fund a pilot to test approaches to the provision of mental health in-reach support to schools from Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

In progress.

2.14

The Welsh Government will continue to work with Pioneer Schools through the relevant areas of learning and experience, including Health and Well-being, to ensure online safety issues inform the development of Curriculum for Wales 2022.

In progress.

2.15

The Welsh Government will continue to fund the All Wales School Liaison Core Programme (AWSLCP) in 2019–20 in partnership with the police. Online safety is an area covered by the programme.

New action.

2.16

The Welsh Government will liaise with the National Cyber Security Centre to promote Cyber First programmes in Wales.

New action.

2.17

The Welsh Government will work with Get Safe Online to ensure there is an effective launch of its newly developed Welsh language website.

New action.

2.18

The Welsh Government will work with the other devolved nations and the UK Government to share good practice in online safety and explore opportunities to collaborate.

New action.

2.19

The Welsh Government will work with Google and ParentZone in support of their online safety education programme.

New action.

2.20

The Welsh Government will work with partners to ensure that young people have access to accessible information and advice to support awareness raising regarding the issue of self-harm and suicide.

New action.

2.21

The Welsh Government will work with the National Crime Agency to explore opportunities to work together to deliver education and raise awareness of online child abuse and exploitation.

New action.

2.22

The Welsh Government will develop, through the British-Irish Council, ‘Be Safe. Discover. Connect.’ as a branding for collaborative resources.

New action.

3.   Communication and promotion

Status

3.1

The Welsh Government will continue to support education stakeholder engagement events which include a focus on online safety.

Ongoing.

3.2

The Welsh Government will continue to provide a dynamic Online Safety Zone on Hwb, for sources of online safety news, events and resources for children, young people, education professionals, governors, parents and carers.

Ongoing.

3.3

The Welsh Government will support Safer Internet Day in Wales annually to raise the profile and importance of online safety across Wales.

Ongoing.

3.4

The Welsh Government will use social media platforms to communicate and raise awareness of the extensive range of online safety activities taking place across Wales.

Ongoing.

3.5

The Welsh Government will continue to work with SWGfL to provide a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter.

Ongoing.

3.6

Building on the ‘This is Not Love. This is Control’ campaign, the Welsh Government is rolling-out a campaign to highlight the issue of coercive control in relationships specifically aimed at young people.

New action.

3.7

The Welsh Government will engage with the youth work sector to ensure appropriate online safety resources are available and publicised.

New action.

4.    Guidance and policy

Status

4.1

The Welsh Government will revise and update the statutory safeguarding guidance Keeping learners safe, which will include an update on online safety.

In progress.

4.2

The Welsh Government will ensure the issues of online grooming and child sexual exploitation are considered when updating the statutory guidance Safeguarding Children and Young People from Sexual Exploitation.

In progress.

4.3

A multi-agency task and finish group will develop all Wales practice guidance on safeguarding children at risk of online abuse. This will be consulted on and issued by Cardiff and the Vale Safeguarding Board on behalf of The Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS) Cymru and the Safeguarding Boards in Wales. The National Protection Procedures and supporting practice guidance are intended to be issued in early 2019.

In progress.

4.4

The Welsh Government will maintain the recommended web filtering standards for schools in Wales.

Ongoing.

4.5

The Welsh Government will review and revise the non-statutory anti-bullying guidance Respecting others, which includes advice on tackling online bullying in schools.

In progress.

4.6

The Welsh Government will review the anti-bullying resources that are currently available for schools and assess any needs to better support education practitioners to tackle bullying in education settings.

In progress.

4.7

The Welsh Government will maintain Respect and resilience guidance for schools.

Ongoing.

4.8

The Welsh Government will develop a strategy ‘Connected Communities’ for tackling loneliness and social isolation and promoting well-being in Wales.

New action.

5.   Research

Status

5.1

The Welsh Government will continue to explore current screen time usage by children in Wales to inform policy development in this area.

In progress.

5.2

In the National Survey for Wales in 2020–21 the Welsh Government will include online safety as a topic.

New action.

6.   Resources                                                                                      

Status

6.1

The Welsh Government will work with SWGfL to promote and provide access to 360 degree safe Cymru, a bilingual online safety self-assessment tool that is available to all maintained schools in Wales, through single sign-on (SSO) with Hwb. The content of the tool, in addition to the associated policy templates, will be updated once every two years.

Ongoing.

6.2

The Welsh Government will develop bilingual online safety resources for primary and secondary children on a range of specific online safety issues.

Ongoing.

6.3

The Welsh Government will explore what online safety resources are available and how they can be tailored for home-educating parents and carers.

In progress.

6.4

The Welsh Government will continue to develop a range of bilingual online safety materials for education practitioners, including classroom resources and teachers guides.

Ongoing.

6.5

The Welsh Government will continue to provide new materials to enable education practitioners to host online safety sessions for parents and carers.

Delivered.

6.6

The Welsh Government will continue to work with Common Sense Media and SWGfL to develop and publish over 50 bilingual lesson plans and associated resources on a range of online safety issues.

Delivered.

6.7

The Welsh Government will continue to review, update and publish the Online Safety Resource for Wales on Hwb.

Delivered.

6.8

The Welsh Government will part-fund the development of a Year 6 child sexual exploitation resource.

Delivered.

6.9

The Welsh Government will develop and roll out a safeguarding audit tool and guidance for schools to use to assess their safeguarding provision.

In progress.

6.10

The Welsh Government will work with the NSPCC to host a new bilingual version of NSPCC’s Net Aware resources.

Delivered.

6.11

The update on the Welsh Government’s counselling toolkit will include a chapter on online counselling, giving guidance on providing a safe online service.

In progress.

6.12

The Welsh Government will undertake a small scoping exercise around online safety resources for learners with additional learning needs (ALN).

New action.

6.13

The Welsh Government will develop and publish an online safety toolkit for practitioners working in early years settings.

New action.

6.14

The Welsh Government will develop a series of six online safety films for parents, carers and families.

New action.

7.   Training and development

Status

7.1

The Welsh Government will continue to deliver a comprehensive online safety training programme, focusing on specific areas of online safety.

In progress.

7.2

The Welsh Government will continue to promote the Keeping learners safe – Online safety module.

Ongoing.

7.3

The Welsh Government will ensure online safety remains a key part of all digital inclusion-related activity.

Ongoing.

7.4

The Welsh Government will continue to work with key stakeholders to provide training material and support on matters relating to counter-terrorism.

Ongoing.


Our use of the internet and digital technology is constantly evolving and has become an increasingly integral part of everyday life for children and young people. As the internet and its usage evolves so does the opportunity for misuse and the potential risk of harm to its users.

The actions set out in this document illustrate the Welsh Government’s commitment and proactive approach to helping to protect children and young people from illegal and harmful content on the internet and to promote safe, responsible and considerate behaviour online.

The Welsh Government will continue to review progress against these actions and will publish an annual update to the action plan.