SID Theme:
‘Create, connect and share respect: A better internet starts with you.’

It’s the second day of the second week of the second month, and you know what that means – it’s Safer Internet Day (#SID2018)! You knew that, right?

And this year it’s a double whammy as #SID2018 falls on NZ’s Waitangi Day so, whether you observe SID on the official international day or not, actively considering your contribution to a safer internet is a great way to begin a new school year.

For the uninitiated, #SID2018 is a global initiative aimed at promoting and encouraging the positive use of digital technology. The aim is not only to create a safer internet but a better one. One that empowers users to engage with technology responsibly, respectfully, critically and creatively.  

This is our jam.

And while it may not necessarily be yours, schools have an obligation to promote and enhance the safety and security of the students who enter their gates – and this includes online.

I know, it’s probably unfair for me to put the weight of a safer internet on your shoulders right now. You’ve just come back from school holidays; you’ve probably got a million other things to consider. But in my experience, schools have never subscribed to a ‘let’s ease you into the year’ philosophy. It’s a full on gig 100% of the time, so why pull punches now? Besides, it’s not me calling you out, this year’s theme, ‘create, connect and share respect: a better internet starts with you’ is an international call to arms. So let’s get sharing.

What are we doing you ask? Just because internet safety is our bread and butter, doesn’t mean that it’s perfect all the time. We are always looking to improve our products and services. If you read our In Brief update you’ll be aware of some exciting changes coming in 2018 (more on that in future posts). We’re still fine tuning, however we’re super excited to share updates as soon as we can – so watch this space.

In the meantime, here’s what we’re doing to live the ‘create, connect, share’ theme in 2018:

We’re continuing to create new articles and content to support schools understanding of digital technology. In 2017, we launched N4L’s Support Hub with the aim of empowering the N4L community with resources that support their understanding of all things tech.

We know web security and filtering services are important to schools. How about diving into our ‘Web Filtering Overview’ to learn more about how our filtering service works. Whether you use our filtering service a little bit, a lot, or not at all, the fundamentals are there to enhance your understanding of filtering in general. So have a browse and let us know what you think – even better, how about creating some content for our community…

Connections matter – and I’m not just talking about your internet connection. When individuals work alongside organisations with a shared sense of purpose, good things happen.

In 2017, we, along with our friends at Netsafe and the Connected Learning Advisory (CLA) came together to clarify our roles in supporting a safer internet in NZ schools.

The purpose of this was to connect schools with the appropriate avenues of support – we’re all here to support you. Want the poster? Click below to learn more about each our organisations and how we support you.

Still have questions, connect with us and we’ll set you straight.

We all know stuff and while the quality of our knowledge can vary, there are always things worth sharing. And the good news is that educators are inherently built to share. So whether you’re sitting on some gold resources that support digital citizenship, or you have some well established cyber security practices – it’s time to get sharing.

If you’re looking for a place to share, here are some suggestions:

  1. In the comments below
  2. Jump onto  N4L’s Support Hub and leave some feedback or post to our community
  3. Got Twitter? Tweet your resources using the #SID2018

I’ll get you started by sharing N4L’s 10 top tips to internet security. In it we share 10 things you can implement to enhance the security of your school’s network and promote a safer internet.

And if that’s not what you’re after, check out our friends at Netsafe who have developed a guide to Staying Safe Online, which includes great advice for managing your social media accounts and empowers users with tools to remove disrespectful activity from your online life.

There are lots of ways you can participate in Safer Internet Day this year, so go on, create, connect and share respect: a better internet starts with you…!


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