Cymraeg

1. 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.

 


  • 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.

    During 2021-22 in an ongoing commitment to supporting families we published the following guidance:

    In October 2021 we published a series of 24 bilingual, ‘In the know’ short guides for families that provide the latest advice on apps, social media and games. Each guide includes a detailed overview of the app, outlining the age rating and key terminology families should know. The guides also highlight risks and concerns the apps pose and provide advice and tips on their suitability for children and young people, including detailed instructions on how to enable parental controls and safety settings.

    Action status: Ongoing.

    During 2020-21 in an ongoing commitment to supporting families we published the following guidance:

    We will continue to provide guidance on topical issues to support families. During 2021-22 we will publish:

    • A family guide to online racism
    • A family guide to infinite scroll
    • A family guide to your right to be safe and secure on line
    • A family guide to becoming cyber smart to avoid cyber crime

    In addition we will publish a series of 25 bilingual, short guides for parents and carers on the latest and most popular ‘apps’, social networks and games used by children and young people. The guides will provide parents and carers with information on how these apps are used, highlight risks and concerns the apps pose and provide advice and tips on their suitability for children and young people. All guides will be hosted publically in a dedicated area for parents and carers on the Keeping Safe Online area of Hwb.

    Action status: Ongoing

    In 2019–20, we produced six family guides with the following titles.

    To accompany the family guides we have commissioned the production of a series of six short ‘Starting the conversation’ films for families. The films are aimed at families (including parents, carers, grandparents and extended family) and were 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 compliment the family guides.

    In our ongoing commitment to supporting families, we have further commissioned the following resources to be produced during 2020–21:

    Action status: Ongoing.

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

    We have 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, we will produce six family guides with the following titles.

    To accompany the family guides we have 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.

    Action status: Ongoing.

    Parents and carers play an integral role in ensuring their children are suitably confident and equipped to stay safe online. As part of our digital resilience in education activity, we will continue to develop bilingual guidance to provide parents and carers with an understanding of what their children are exploring in school.

    We continue to work with SWGfL to develop and create bilingual guidance on various online safety and cyber resilience issues and topics specifically to support parents and carers in keeping their families safe online.

    For the latest guidance, please see our updates from 2019 and 2020.

  • The Welsh Government will continue to periodically 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.

    A new Parenting. Give it time digital campaign was launched in November in recognition of the expansion of the age ranges (from 0-7 years of age to 0-18 years of age) to support the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Act 2020, and its associated legislation campaign.

    The Parenting. Give it time website has been redesigned, with information, advice and support linked to specific age ranges 0-4 years old, 4-7 years old, 8-12 years old, 13+ years old and a separate ‘Supporting You’ section.  New resources developed to support the expansion includes Positive Behaviour top tips, Top tips for Teenage behaviour, updated blogs from the Parenting. Give it time FACES families and specific online safety thumbnails created to support the older age ranges.

    Action status: Ongoing.

    As result of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, all messaging under the Parenting. Give it time campaign has focussed on a number of key areas and top themes identified by parents. These included - Children’s Behaviour; Give them Time and Supporting You, under the overall banner of a re-focussed autumn campaign launched in November 2020 called ‘Parenting Moments’. A wide range of relevant, themed sources of advice and support, which is helpful to parents during this time was collected and linked under each of the themes on the Parenting. Give it time website.  New material was produced to support the campaign using real parenting moments.  A new overarching film was created and advertised on prime time TV and digital radio and communication channels; and films created to support each of the three themes. A number of new resources have also been created, including a top ten tips for ‘parents to encourage their young child’s development during the COVID-19 restrictions’; top tips around ‘separation anxiety – returning or starting childcare or school’, to coincide with the start of the new school term and returning to school following the second lockdown; and top tips on ‘staying positive during the winter and spring and summer’ and ‘working from home’.  An expert film on ‘Managing Behaviour’ by an educational psychologist, covering understanding and how to respond to children’s behaviour with bite size clips created to be used for social media, and an information resource for the website;  blogs on parenting styles, a new mum during lockdown and from the FACES families on their experiences of lockdown and home schooling; and information resources and Top Tips on ‘routines’ and ‘screen time’ have also been created and uploaded on the website.

    Work continues to extend the age ranges for the campaign up to the age of 18 in order to support the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Act and its associated Legislation campaign launch, with trusted sources of information linked under key themes uploaded to the website by the Summer 2021.

    In March 2020, the ‘Parenting. Give it Time.’ campaign was paused in line with strategic communications advice. The campaign eventually resumed on a week-by-week basis on 6 May 2020 under the new COVID-19 campaign umbrella web page ‘Stay Safe. Stay Positive’ organised to provide support to parents and carers in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact, including the lockdown in the early stages, and spending more time at home with children. Relevant information links from professionals (including links to the online safety resources hosted on Hwb) were collated and organised under these themes, and promoted on social media. Two new resources were created to support the campaign – Stay Safe, Stay Positive: 10 top tips and Stay Safe. Stay Positive: Separation Anxiety. In addition, a well-established parenting support helpline has been enhanced to provide Welsh-speaking call-takers that went live on 29 June 2020. While we are linking to other Welsh Government and professional resources for specific online safety advice, we are also looking at creating a ‘Parenting. Give it Time.’ expert ‘screen time’ film by early 2021, hosted on the website and promoted via our social media channels.

    Work is currently underway to extend the age ranges for the campaign up to the age of 18 in order to support parents and carers with older children as they go through emotional, mental and physical development, including hormonal changes. The proposed new resources and policies for parents and 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 expect the expansion to be launched during 2021.

    Action status: Ongoing.

    We intend to extend the age ranges for ‘Parenting. Give it time.’ up to 18 in order to support parents and 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 and 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 and carers benefit from their stories.

    Action status: Ongoing.

    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, Facebook and Instagram pages provide parenting tips, information and advice, and signpost parents and carers to sources of further support. A booklet and a series of information advice sheets on handling common parenting concerns was also provided to parents and 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 smart phone. 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 and carers sharing screen time with their children. Advice for parents and 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.

  • 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.

    During 2021-22 in an ongoing commitment to supporting school governors we published the following guidance:

    Action status: Ongoing.

    During 2020-21 in an ongoing commitment to supporting school governors we published the following guidance:

    We will continue to provide guidance on topical issues to support families. During 2021-22 we will publish:

    • A governors guide to online racism
    • A governors guide to infinite scroll
    • A governors guide children’s right’s to be safe and secure on line
    • A governors guide to becoming cyber smart to avoid cyber crime

    Action status: Ongoing.

    Supplementing the existing suite of governor resources, we funded and produced a further six playlist resources covering key areas of online safety. The titles of the resources that have been published are as follows:

    In addition to these playlist resources, we published guidance for governors in May 2020 – Five key questions for governing bodies to help challenge their schools and colleges to effectively safeguard their learners. This guidance was adapted from the UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS) Education Working Group’s version to fit within a Welsh education context.

    In our ongoing commitment to support governors and schools in their safeguarding responsibilities, we have further commissioned the following resources to be produced during 2020–21:

    Action status: Ongoing.

    In 2018–19, we 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 we have commissioned the production of the following resources specifically for governors:

    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, we funded the development of resources aimed at governors through our 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.

  • The Welsh Government will develop new advice and information tailored to directly support children and young people with online issues and concerns. This will be co-constructed with young people and published in a new bespoke area on Hwb.

    During 2021-22 we have worked with ProMo Cymru, to develop bespoke advice and information for children and young people on online issues. Through a number of focus groups across Wales the project was informed by children and young people’s experiences, ensuring the advice is relevant, accessible and engaging to young people.

    The advice supports children and young people with a range of online issues such as:

    Inappropriate or offensive content

    Online bullying

    Online gaming

    Online grooming

    Online hate

    Online radicalisation and extremism

    Online reputation and footprint

    Online sexual harassment

    Sharing nudes

    Social media

    This advice and information can be found on Hwb’s new ‘Online issues and worries’ area which has been created and designed especially for children and young people.

    Action status: Ongoing.

    Keeping Safe Online is a dedicated area which has been developed to support digital resilience in education across Wales. The area hosts bilingual news, information and an extensive range of resources that cover online safety and cyber security issues, all designed to help keep learners safe online. To date key audiences have included education practitioners, governors and families. Building upon this, we will expand the area by developing high-quality information and advice that speaks directly to children and young people’s online experiences and concerns.

  • The Welsh Government will establish a new children and young people’s advisory panel to help make digital resilience guidance as engaging, helpful and appropriate as possible.

    In March 2022 we launched a new area on Hwb, which includes online safety advice written directly for children and young people on ten different topics. The advice pages offer children and young people important information and guidance on what to do and where to turn for help if they are worried about something online.

    To help us make sure that the advice meets the needs of children and young people, we are setting up a children and young people’s advisory panel. Members will give feedback about existing content, highlight any online issues currently affecting them and make recommendations to inform future content and policy direction.