Online Safety Week February 2018

Andy Morfett | |

Online Safety Week at Helsby High School

As part of Helsby High School’s continuing work to help our students become responsible young people, we had a focused week on Online Safety during February. Students in all year groups were given a very powerful, outstandingly performed and thought-provoking assembly from students in the Drama Department, then were asked to discuss the following four questions the next day during form time:
• How can we create more positive connections online?
• How can we show and share respect online?
• How would it feel to receive a hurtful/nasty message online?
• How would it feel to receive a positive/kind message online?

Each form was asked to put an answer together for each of these questions and then add to our Online Safety Thought Board. The thoughts are now being collated and will be used to feedback to all year groups via forthcoming assemblies.

Emily T. from Year 13 has given a review of the performances:

During Online Safety Week 2018, Drama students from years 8 to 13 performed in assemblies to all year groups. The actors chose their stories from research they had completed and found real life stories that, due to issues surrounding Online Safety, ended tragically. The students performed these stories as if they were the person these stories were about, and the effect was powerful and thought provoking.

I was one of the students who performed in the assemblies and I was surprised by how attentively the students listened when we were performing; you could have heard a pin drop. This made me realise how much Online Safety influences the lives of young people and it also made me realise that performing the stories made them seem so much more real.

I found a story to perform that didn’t end badly for the person involved and I spoke about the support network that she had in her school to help her through the issue she faced. I hope that this story reminded the students that we have a strong support network in our school. After the assemblies the Year Leaders made our school support networks clear to the students and made sure everyone knew how to receive help if they needed to talk.

I feel proud that our school is tackling the issue of keeping safe online in a new and interesting way. I find using Drama as an aid for social change very interesting and this is the area of drama which I wish to study in further education.

If any student is having difficulties online, there are a number of routes to get support, guidance or help. Students can access the SHARP System, via the school website, to report anything confidentially, or speak to a parent/carer, their Form Tutor, Student Support Coordinator, Year Leader, Key Stage Leader or the PCSOs, who are based in A54.