PREVENT duty – the answer to ensuring online safety and compliance for schools in England

Today, the government released a draft document for consultation called “Keeping children safe in education: Statutory guidance of schools and colleges” re-emphasising the requirement for schools to filter and prevent harmful content being accessed in schools. The content includes guidance on preventing radicalisation in schools, though the whole document emphasises safeguarding children in all aspects OF SAFE – identifying  both types of abuse and specific safeguarding issues.

“As schools and colleges increasingly work online it is essential that children are safeguarded from potentially harmful and inappropriate online material. As such governing bodies and proprietors should ensure appropriate filters and appropriate monitoring systems are in place. Children should not be able to access harmful or inappropriate material from the school or colleges IT system.”

Traditionally schools have taken a “filtering” approach to online content, with software such as Lightspeed and Watchguard to make sure content is blocked. However, there are instances where harmless content is unjustifiably blocked because of flagged keywords – frustrating learning objectives. So what is the solution?

Active Monitoring Software Complying With PREVENT

Active Monitoring allows you to monitor activity within your whole digital environment (web, email, social media, intranet). Identifying harmful or inappropriate behaviour allows schools to take swift & appropriate action without denying all pupils access to a wealth of valuable online resources & social media.

What Can Active Monitoring Safeguard Children From?

  • Exposure to Extremism & Risk of Radicalisation
  • Cyberbullying
  • Inappropriate or harmful behaviour on social media
  • Deliberate access & exposure to inappropriate material
  • Online grooming & sexual threat
  • Sexual & domestic abuse
  • Exposure to racist, homophobic or extreme language.
  • Inadvertent exposure to inappropriate web content

How the software supports teachers in compliance with the Prevent duty:

  1. Captures and alerts teachers to any harmful digital content, activity or behaviour.
  2. Dedicated radicalisation module developed with multiagency support which is constantly updated
  3. Advanced incident management means that staff can identify and focus on more vulnerable children & learners
  4. Encourages and shapes responsible behaviour and awareness in the digital world

To find out more about the software and get advice about how it works in detail, you can call Soft Egg on 0118 936 0080.

Further resources

Advice for schools on the Prevent Duty

Prevent Toolkit for schools

Learning together to be safe: A toolkit to support schools in preventing violent extremism

Advice on buying ICT for your school

BBC article

Schools told to monitor pupils’ web use to prevent radicalisation