3. 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.
Actions and updates
The Welsh Government will continue to support education stakeholder engagement events which include a focus on online safety.
In March 2020, we, together with SWGfL, attended two Regional Digital Learning Events in Venue Cymru, Llandudno, and the All Nations Centre, Cardiff. The events, hosted by the regional consortia, replaced the National Digital Learning Event and aim to bring together teachers and those working in education, to share examples and best practice in digital learning taking place across Wales.
We hosted two stands at each event led by the Digital Resilience in Education Branch and SWGfL, raising awareness of the digital resilience activity as part of the Hwb Programme. Two further events scheduled for March were cancelled due to the impact of COVID-19. Through SWGfL we continue to ensure a presence at the regional consortia hosted HwbMeets covering aspects of online safety.
During 2019–20, we supported ten ‘Online Safety Briefings’ delivered as part of the UK Safer Internet Centre outreach work providing information on the latest online safety, trends, technologies, issues and research. We support this through promoting the sessions and their availability on the Keeping safe online area of Hwb.
Action status: Ongoing.
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 learners) 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 our online safety activities, the Online Safety Zone on Hwb and its 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, we 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. We will continue to provide communications support to raise awareness of this offering from the UK Safer Internet Centre.
Action status: Ongoing.
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.
The Welsh Government will continue to provide a dynamic online safety area on Hwb, for sources of online safety news, events and resources for children, young people, education professionals, governors, parents and carers.
In May 2020, the Online Safety Zone on Hwb was renamed Keeping safe online to reflect the expanding remit of the area. The Keeping safe online area supports children and young people, parents and carers, practitioners and governors with online safety, cyber security and data protection, providing an extensive range of resources, guidance and links to further sources of support.
During summer term 2020, we undertook a review of the Keeping safe online area and examined how to enhance the user experience. Following this review, a redesigned Keeping safe online area was launched in September 2020.
Since the launch of the Online Safety Zone in 2017, we have now published over 150 resources that includes 112 playlist resources, 4 Safer Internet Day education packs, in addition to 16 practitioner guides and 19 guides for parents and carers.
The Keeping safe online area has received over 307,000 page views during 2019–20, reaching over 770,000 page views to date.
During 2020–21, the Keeping safe online area will continue to host all online safety, cyber security and data protection news, resources, guidance and information for schools in Wales.
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. Hwb has evolved to become the single strategic digital channel for education in Wales, hosting Curriculum for Wales, 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, we have published over 105 resources that includes 66 playlist resources, three Safer Internet Day education packs, in addition to 10 teacher guides and 10 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, we will continue to create, host all online safety news, resources, guidance and information relating to the online safety in education programme in Wales. We will also undertake a review of the Online Safety Zone and will look at ways to enhance the current user experience.
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.
The Welsh Government will support Safer Internet Day in Wales annually to raise the profile and importance of online safety across Wales.
In preparation for Safer Internet Day (SID) 2020, we, in partnership with the UK Safer Internet Centre (UKSIC), led a campaign to encourage children and young people, school staff, parents and carers, and businesses in Wales to get involved and take part in Safer Internet Day.
We held a SID information event in partnership with the UKSIC in November 2019. The purpose of the event was to provide an overview of SID 2020 activities and information for schools, organisations and businesses on how they can get involved. Over 60 organisations attended the event.
Working with Childnet, we funded translation of the UKSIC SID Education packs. The bilingual packs, which provide a range of resources for schools to deliver sessions to children and young people across the age ranges, are available on the Keeping safe online area on Hwb and to date received almost 6,000 views.
We ran a competition which challenged children and young people to create a public announcement-style advertisement aimed at friends and family. The theme was ‘A better internet: how to look after yourself and others’.
The competition closed in December 2019 and the judging panel included representatives from a range of organisations, including the Children’s Commissioner for Wales, the NSPCC, the BBC, the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), IntoFilm, SWGfL, the Home Office and us. Ten schools (five primary and five secondary) were announced as finalists on 15 January 2020 and invited to attend a screening of the films and the awards ceremony in Cardiff on SID (11 February 2020).
The Minister for Education, Kirsty Williams MS, presented the awards at the event and the winning films were shared on Hwb.
The winner in the secondary category was Ysgol Nantgwyn, with their film which explores the impact of sharing images without consent.
The winner in the primary category was Ysgol Bro Pedr with their film outlining the importance of keeping your passwords private and protecting your data online.
Planning for SID 2021, which will be held on Tuesday 9 February 2021, is underway and campaign updates will be available on the dedicated Safer Internet Day page on Hwb. Plans include a virtual stakeholder planning event in the autumn term and running a digital storytelling competition, which will be open to schools, education and youth settings in Wales, on the theme ‘Tackling misinformation’.
Action status: Ongoing.
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 MS, 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 2020 has started already and campaign updates will be available on the dedicated Safer Internet Day page on Hwb.
We, 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.
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 to inspire a national conversation. We 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.
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.
In 2019–20, we used a number of communications and social media platforms to raise awareness of online safety, cyber security and data protection opportunities and resources.
Over 200 news articles have been published on the Keeping safe online area on Hwb, including half termly round-up news articles which summarise the opportunities and resources from each half term.
In addition, online safety, cyber security and data protection opportunities and resources have been promoted through the following channels.
- Our education newsletter Dysg
- @HwbNews Twitter account
- @WG_Education Twitter account
- @wgmin_education Twitter account
- @edubeginsathome Twitter account
- Education Wales Facebook page
- Education Begins At Home Facebook page
- The online safety newsletter for Wales
During 2020–21, we will continue to communicate and raise awareness of the extensive range of opportunities and resources through our communications channels, newsletters and social media platforms.
Action status: Ongoing.
In 2018–19, we used a number of communications and social media platforms to raise awareness of online safety including the following.
Online Safety Zone on Hwb
Over 145 news articles have been published on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb to promote and highlight the online safety activities available.
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.
We have used the @HwbNews twitter account extensively to raise awareness of the online safety activity. Items have also been shared on twitter via our education channel @WG_Education and the Education Wales Facebook page. The Minister for Education’s channel @wgmin_education has also promoted activity in relation to online safety on occasion.
To engage further, during 2019 to 2020 the gov.wales website will feature the developments and resources on our online safety activities.
During 2019 to 2020, we will continue to communicate and raise awareness of the extensive range of resources and various online safety events through our communications channels, newsletters and social media platforms.
Action status: Ongoing.
Our @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 Keeping safe online area of Hwb.
Additionally, the education newsletter 'Dysg' is also extensively used to promote online safety activities.
The Welsh Government will continue to work with SWGfL to provide a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter.
In 2019–20, we have published a monthly monthly bilingual online safety newsletter 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 online safety activities.
The newsletter is provided by SWGfL who are currently contracted by us until March 2020 to run the online safety awareness-raising project in Wales.
During 2020–21, we will continue to work with SWGfL to provide a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter and publish on the Keeping safe online area of Hwb.
Action status: Ongoing.
In 2018–19, we 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 online safety activities.
The newsletter is provided by SWGfL who are currently contracted by us to run the online safety awareness-raising project in Wales.
During 2019–20, we will continue to work with SWGfL to provide a monthly bilingual online safety newsletter and publish on the Online Safety Zone on Hwb.
Action status: Ongoing.
On a monthly basis SWGfL will continue to provide a bilingual online safety newsletter which is published on Hwb.
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.
The Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (VAWDASV) communication campaign ‘This is not love. This is control’ featured a designated phase, ‘This is not OK’, and was aimed at coercive control within young people’s relationships. ‘This is not OK’ launched to coincide with university Fresher’s week’s and those aged 19 to 21 before further sharing targeted messages at those in 16 to 18 age range. Messages for parents and carers and concerned others were also developed, raising awareness and knowledge of signs they can look out for.
The campaign saw over three million impressions through digital advertising and more than 200,000 views of the campaign videos.
Recognising the potential for an increase in violence and abuse as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we launched our ‘Home shouldn’t be a place of fear’ campaign in May 2020. We aim to ensure that all victims know that services are still operating, and to encourage bystanders and concerned others to access help and information.
‘Home shouldn’t be a place of fear’ is a multi-media campaign and has been shared across television, radio, national and local news and press, online, and through community networks such as pharmacies, local supermarkets and police forces, reaching the widest and most vulnerable.
Action status: Delivered (see new actions).
The ‘This is Not Love. This is Control’ campaign is part of our long-standing commitment to raising awareness of and challenging attitudes to Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (VAWDASV) in Wales.
Our 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.
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
The Welsh Government will engage with the youth work sector to ensure appropriate online safety resources are available and publicised.
Following on from the publication of the Youth Work Strategy for Wales in 2019, we worked with the Interim Youth Work Board and published an implementation document setting out how the high-level vision would be achieved. A range of subgroups to the Interim Youth Work Board, Strategy Participation Groups (SPG), were set up and produced work plans setting out how that specific strand of work would contribute to the overall goals.
However, in March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic started, work across the SPG’s was largely halted. This enabled frontline workers to focus on supporting young people and some members of these groups were furloughed from their normal places of work.
Throughout this year, our Digital Group and our Marketing Group continued to operate and worked with us to publish bulletins on issues such as safeguarding, participation, youth information. This information on resources was available through the Digital Group’s work via the Notion website, as well as a special guest-edited edition written by the Ethnic Minorities and Youth Support Team (EYST) Wales. The safeguarding edition of the bulletin included tips for working safely online, in accordance with Wales Safeguarding Procedures.
In addition, we have continued to promote the appropriate links to all of our COVID-19 pages, the ‘safeguarding and supporting vulnerable young people’ links, and the resources freely available to all through Hwb. Our Youth Engagement Branch has participated in the safeguarding and vulnerable children and young people workstream, and has led and co-ordinated the work of the subsidiary post-16 group for safeguarding and vulnerable children and young people.
We continue to work alongside the sector to develop guidance to support youth work services expand or reopen their services. Current guidance was published in August 2020.
As lockdown measures are eased, the work of the Interim Youth Work Board is returning to the implementation of the Youth Work Strategy. All SPG’s will be asked to reconsider their work plans given the considerable lessons learnt about remote and digital working during the pandemic.
The Interim Youth Work Board has also met with groups of young people to identify what they would like to see in the future for youth work, and that has included listening to their views on what worked well during the lockdown, what they would like to see more of and what they would like to be done differently. This will feed into the ongoing work of the Accessible and Inclusive Group.
Given the delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic it has been agreed that the Interim Youth Work Board will continue its work into 2021. It will provide an initial report to the Minister for Education in December 2020, with the final report later in 2021.
Action status: Ongoing.
In June 2019 we 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. We will, as part of a combined action from the Youth Work Strategy and this 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.
New areas of work 2020
In 2020, 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 and secure online.
The Welsh Government will work with the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to support and develop education activities to be included in the CYBERUK 2021 Programme.
CYBERUK is the UK Government’s flagship cyber security event that features world-leading cyber security experts and organisations demonstrating the latest solutions and opportunities in the cyber security industry.
Due to take place in May 2020, the two-day event was rescheduled for 2021 due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We will engage with the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and partners to support the development of the educational outreach activities as part of CYBERUK to promote and encourage Welsh learners and schools to get involved. We will work with the NCSC to host a fringe event specifically for education practitioners to explore cyber security and resilience in education.
The Welsh Government will develop a campaign to promote and raise awareness of the risk of phishing to support education stakeholders in Wales.
During 2020, we worked with Tarian to develop online training aimed at raising the awareness of phishing and the threat posed to sensitive data on schools and organisations systems. The training provides education practitioners and professionals with an overview of phishing, techniques used, and support and guidance to protect themselves and their organisations.
We will continue to promote the training to schools in Wales and will explore opportunities to develop a phishing campaign to further raise awareness across education settings in Wales.
The Welsh Government will continue to build and develop the ‘This is Not Love. This is Control’ campaign.
We will continue to build and develop the ‘This is Not Love. This is Control’ campaign and share communication and campaign messages to highlight the issue of coercive control and unhealthy relationships specifically aimed at young people.