What’s The Government Doing About Cyber Safety?
National Pilot to increase Cyber-Safety in Schools
The Australian Government is concerned at the emergence of cyber-bullying in our schools and the impact it has on students.
The National Pilot to increase Cyber-Safety in Schools is being conducted by the Alannah and Madeline Foundation (AMF). It involves 164 government and non-government schools in urban, rural and remote regions.
It will help confront safety issues in e-communications, including cyber-bullying and examine the effectiveness of existing cyber-safety programs in schools.
Schools will be provided with web resources to help them create an approach to cyber-safety that meets their specific needs. The project will also help clarify the role that schools play in ensuring responsible and safe use of technology.
The pilot aims to:
- Make cyber-safety an integral part of student wellbeing practices in schools;
- Improve the curriculum in relation to cyber-safety;
- Increase the skill and confidence of teachers to confront cyber-safety issues; and
- Help schools work with parents and the community to keep children safe.
The development of content for the initiative has been informed by extensive research and by a number of cyber-safety experts from across Australia.
Read more, including details of schools participating in the pilot:http://www.deewr.gov.au/Schooling/DigitalEducationRevolution/Pages/AMFoundation.aspx
The Alannah and Madeline Foundation was set up in the name of two young girls who were killed in 1996 at Port Arthur in Tasmania, as a national charity with the belief that all children should have a safe and happy childhood without being subjected to any form of violence.
Read more: http://www.amf.org.au/Cybersafety/
The pilot’s outcomes will be independently evaluated and used to inform the Government’s review of the National Safe Schools Framework (NSSF), due to finish in June 2010.
This coincides with the announcement that in the next sitting week, the Rudd Government will seek to establish its Joint Parliamentary Standing Committee on Cyber Safety.
This Committee will further support the Government’s work to make the internet a safer place for young people to socialise, research and engage with broader society online.
Joint Select Committee on Cyber-Safety
The Joint Select Committee on Cyber-Safety was established under a resolution of appointment passed by the House of Representatives on 25 February 2010. The Senate concurred with the resolution of appointment, with an amendment, on 11 March 2010, which was agreed to by the House of Representatives on 15 March 2010.
On 13 May 2010 the Senate agreed to a resolution referring an additional term of reference, relating to the merit of establishing an Online Ombudsman, to the Committee for its inquiry.
The Committee resolved to commence its inquiry by focusing on selected topics from its terms of reference. The Committee accepted submissions on all its terms of reference, but will initially focus on these issues. The Committee invited interested persons and organisations to lodge submissions by Friday, 25 June 2010.
Terms of reference: http://www.aph.gov.au/house/committee/jscc/tor.htm
Committee Members: http://www.aph.gov.au/house/committee/jscc/members.htm
Public hearings: http://www.aph.gov.au/house/committee/jscc/hearings.htm
The Cybersmart program is a national cybersafety education program managed by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), as part of the Australian Government’s commitment to promoting online safety for children and young people.
The world online is powerful and engaging for young people and adults alike, offering a wealth of opportunity. The Cybersmart program enables children, parents, carers, teachers and library staff to manage online risks, so their experiences are safe and positive.
The Cybersmart program aims to:
- Inform children, parents, teachers and library staff about cybersafety issues
- Educate audiences through information, resources and practical advice
- Empower children to be safe online.
The Cybersmart program includes:
- A comprehensive range of information and resources designed to meet the needs of children, parents, teachers, and library staff. All resources are provided free of charge in Australia.
- Cybersafety Outreach Professional Development for Educators program for schools and Internet Safety Awareness Presentations for parents and children.
- A professional development program for trainee teachers.
- Funding for Kids Helpline to provide an online helpline service to young people who have experienced issues online.
- The Cybersafety Contact Centre—a national telephone centre providing online safety information, advice and access to resources for all Australians.
The ACMA’s Cybersmart website is home to all its cybersafety resources, research and activities.
Young kids: http://www.cybersmart.gov.au/Young%20Kids.aspx
Read more: http://www.cybersmart.gov.au/