School children in a classroom looking at tablets

How can a strong digital safety culture in your school, college or MAT help to reduce staff workload?

By creating a strong digital safety culture in schools, workload for staff can significantly reduce.

School admin and teaching preparation will become quicker and easier to manage. Safeguarding will become more efficient and effective. IT issues will reduce with a system that works together. Effective digital safety education will create more resilient students leading to fewer incidents to manage.

Reduced planning and admin in a strong school digital safety culture

With a strong digital safety culture in schools, the burden of ‘non-teaching’ tasks are reduced. A robust and safe IT infrastructure will give staff the confidence to move their teaching practice over to the digital environment, allowing teachers to drastically cut lesson planning and admin time. An incredible number of resources can be available at the touch of a button without the need for vital time to be wasted on printing and photocopying.

How this works
  1. An advanced firewall and content filter allow access to a wider variety of suitable online resources while maintaining optimum protection from cyber threats and harmful content. Filtering will work in real-time and allow a granular approach so that access is appropriate by age or teaching group.
  2. Teachers using effective classroom management tools can put more individualised support in place in real-time without having to print more resources.
  3. Digital classroom management will improve teacher control and improve classroom behaviour reducing time needed for detentions and disciplinary admin.


Better Safeguarding takes less time with a strong Digital Safety Culture in schools

Creating a robust digital safety culture will improve safeguarding across your whole school, but it will also save you time. Using outdated digital safety systems can leave teachers wasting time trying to watch every pupil’s individual screen at once. It can waste leadership time by having to trawl through thousands of monitoring logs with no pre-grading systems. Manual safeguarding records can also lead to time wasted in updating safeguarding records and creating reports. This can also lead to vital issues and follow-up being missed.

How this works
  1. A good Classroom Management tool can make it easy for teachers to see all pupils’ screens at once and close any tabs that shouldn’t be open.
  2. A managed monitoring system will filter out false positives and alert DSLs at the appropriate urgency level.
  3. Secure digital safeguard records will ensure appropriate actions are made at the appropriate time and will be able to create instant reports.


A strong Digital Safety Culture in schools reduces time spent on IT issues

Implementing a strong digital safety culture will reduce the time needed for IT to spend on issues. It will include a strong digital safety education so that children and staff are aware of the safe way to use IT and will use intuitive systems that are easy to operate and use. Using a combined digital safety strategy will ensure all elements complement each other rather than conflict with each other.

How can this be seen in practice?
  • A strong digital safety culture will ensure that the school firewall, filtering, proactive digital monitoring, classroom management, safeguarding records and education elements all complement each other. This will reduce the number of IT issues to solve and if using one provider will mean a singular support point when help is needed.
  • Using a provider that can create an individualised school deployment method will ensure the most time friendly solution. Some schools will be able to save significant time by using a managed monitoring system or cloud-based safety systems.


Why is a strong digital safety culture in school important?

A strong digital safety culture in schools involves the whole school community. A poor digital safety culture may disrupt education, waste staff time and risk safety and safeguarding issues being missed.

Poor digital safety culture in schools can be recognised by:
  • An ineffective firewall putting schools at risk of cyber-attacks.
  • Lack of digital classroom management tools cause reduced pupil engagement.
  • An ineffective filter blocks vital lesson resources.
  • A lack of proactive digital monitoring fails to detect vital signs of a student being at risk.
  • An ineffective filter leads to students accessing harmful content.
  • An ineffective education may result in students being unaware of risk.
  • Ineffective safeguarding records mean vital information is missed.

Having a strong school digital safety culture in schools will improve safety and can reduce workload for all staff. Read How to build a digital safety culture for the whole school community to see how schools are implementing a robust digital safety strategy.

If you have any questions about any aspect of online safety in your school, get in touch with the Smoothwall team today. We’d be delighted to help.

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