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Network and Classroom Management Thread, Pupils 'must manage online risks' in Technical; BBC News - Pupils 'must manage online risks' this was on the bbc yesterday. apparently ofsted think pupils should take ...
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    browolf's Avatar
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    Pupils 'must manage online risks'

    BBC News - Pupils 'must manage online risks'

    this was on the bbc yesterday. apparently ofsted think pupils should take responsibility for internet browsing using "managed systems". Whilst I think internet education is important I don't like the idea of relaxing internet restrictions. Currently we're using our LEAs walled garden (whitelist) filtering.

    Supposedly we can opt out and get back to the less filtered system it was before. No one in management seemed to want to go there last time I pointed it out.

    When the article talks about ""Managed" online systems" are they talking about specific applications or something more generalized?

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    mattmoo's Avatar
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    I don't think they are talking about a specific software solution I think they mean a managed system from pupil guidence right to filtering the workstations. As in let them on some of the sites and give them the required knowledge to make informed decisions as well as having procedures in place to deal with inevitable problems.
    Matt

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    DrCheese's Avatar
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    Our system has always been pretty liberal. We block proxy bypass websites, porn and social networking/chat websites but other than that it's pretty free.

    When I was a student, it would drive me crazy that support staff would block virtually everything under the sun for no real reason, this just wasted my time as I'd only end up having to look it up at home anyway, or i'd be forced to find ways around the system just to do my work, which ran the risk of being caught.
    So we don't don't do the same to the students by default.

    If a teacher wants anything extra blocked in his/her lesson they are able to do it themselves via lanschool. Anything they find that fits into the above categories we'll block at proxy level.

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    To some extent OFSTED are saying that the school should take an active role in being aware of what the students are doing, should help them develop the skills needed survive in the real world, and that blindly trusting systems will only get you so far. Nothing we didn't know really ...

    Whether you do lots of stuff in house or rely on your RBC services the key thing to note is that you are taking an pro-active stance on understanding what your filtering can and can't do, helping students before they get too hooked in with bad habits and making sure that you cover your back at the same time.

    One of the things I am working on (*not* an official LA document!) is the idea that changes to filters will be made no matter what system you use ... and the changes should not be arbitrary, should have an educational or security reason, should be actioned by one of a small nominated group and reviewed / confirmed by a member of senior leadership.

    This gets rid of blaming techies / NMs for things, creates a system of accountability and is an audit trail which should make OFSTED happy too.

    I've attached a draft for people to comment on and I would really like some honest feedback. Comments of "I don't have time" or "Why should I be answerable to a bunch of teachers" are not that constructive ... so I'll accept that people will mutter them under their breath, but please be constructive.
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    I think this is an excellent idea. As you say, it clearly lays down who makes decisions about allowing/blocking web sites (I'd guess you need another column in your document "allow/deny") and logs who has actually implemented it. The idea of having a review date is good - some sites will have been allowed for a short period (perhaps for a project or something), others will just have folded and the domain reused for porn or whatever.

    It takes away the "IT is rubbish, they won't let me use the websites I need" etc (well, it probably won't but it gives technical staff grounds to say "this is the way things work - talk to $approver if you want it to be different!")

    It also gets people used to the idea of change control - things should be stable in a network unless a change is planned!

    For each establishment you'd need a list of who's allowed to request (anyone including pupils??), who's allowed to authorise and confirm, who can actually make changes. I'd guess you also need guidelines for setting review dates - perhaps default to yearly but if a request is made for (say) the duration of the World Cup then it's going to be much shorter.

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    Yup nothing anyone with a clue didn't already know, but it's always useful to have some official acronym or other back you up .. I've bumped into one or two seriously OTT (in strictness terms) ideas hatched in the name of e-safety.

    [CEOP are definitely growing on me, just a pity their take had to be followed by that vacuous comment from BECTA]

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    browolf's Avatar
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    Instead of making more paperwork!
    I'd make an infopath form located on the teachers share of the network they email to make a unblock request. they send the form through email to a designated person who either authorizes it as common sense ok or marks the uncertain box on the form next to their name and forwards it to the next person in the authority chain. if each person in the chain fills in an appropriate box and then forwards the email each person in the chain has a copy of what they did on the form. thus an electronic paper-trail exists.

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Yep, an info path form would be really good and it would be handy to have a report built so you can just export the activities out, mainly so that OFSTED folk (who like stuff on paper) have something they can see.

    However, also consider the small primary school who might only have a technical visit 1 morning a month / fortnight, might not have any helpdesk software, are used to paper logging systems (accident report, bullying report, etc) and it would just work for them.



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