2023 Internet Acceptable Use Policy
2023 Internet acceptable use policy
School Name: Scoil Naomh Fionán na Reanna
Address: Nohoval, Belgooly, Co. Cork.
The aim of this Acceptable Use Policy is to ensure that pupils will benefit from learning opportunities offered by the school’s internet resources in a safe and effective manner. Internet use and access is considered a school resource and privilege. Therefore, if the school AUP is not adhered to, this privilege will be withdrawn and appropriate sanctions – as outlined in the AUP – will be imposed.
It is envisaged that school representatives will revise the AUP regularly. Before signing, the AUP should be read carefully to ensure that the conditions of use are accepted and understood.
This version of the AUP was created on 05/11/2004 by Adrienne Cronin, Nóirín O’ Connor, Edel Burns and Maggie Collins, teaching staff of the above-named school. It has been revised by Nóirín O’ Connor, school principal, in February 2007 and May 2010. Further revision of the policy took place in March 2018, November 2019, April 2021 and April 2023 overseen by Principal, Liz Scanlan.
This Acceptable User Policy (AUP) is in two sections. Section A relates to the use of the internet by students within the school and personnel working on their behalf. Section B relates to staff and visitors to the school who are using the internet and/or the school network and its devices.
Section A – Students
The aim of the AUP is to ensure that pupils will benefit from learning opportunities offered by the school’s internet resources in a safe and effective manner. Internet use and access is considered a school resource and privilege. Therefore, if the school AUP is not adhered to, this privilege will be withdrawn and appropriate sanctions, outlined in the AUP, will be imposed.
The school employs a number of strategies, taking into account the age of the pupils, in order to maximise learning opportunities and to reduce the risks associated with accessing the internet, namely exposure to inappropriate online content and cyberbullying. The strategies are as follows:
- Where children have access to the internet in school, it will occur under the full, uninterrupted supervision of the class teacher. Content will be subject to the restrictions of the Schools Broadband Internet Policy and PDST Technology in Education’s web-filtering function. The purpose of content filtering is to ensure (in so far as possible) that inappropriate websites and content are not accessible from within schools. Any modification of the filtering provision that is in place for Scoil Naomh Fionán National School may only be carried out by the Principal/Deputy Principal.
- The school will regularly monitor internet usage (see Children’s Use of the Internet below).
- Children will not have access to passwords or administrator accounts.
- Uploading and downloading of non-approved software will not be permitted.
- Virus protection software will be used and updated on a regular basis.
- The use of students’ personal pen drives, external drives, CD ROMs/ memory sticks, and DVDs in school requires permission from the teacher.
- If a teacher wishes to integrate a web page into a lesson, that page must be fully previewed/evaluated prior to its classroom usage; for inappropriate advertising content, imagery, and text. If such content exists on the webpage, teachers must download the required lesson content to a Word document and close the webpage prior to the lesson.
- The installation of software, whether from CD-ROM/ memory sticks or online sources, must be pre-approved and conducted by the principal/ deputy principal.
- The usage of personal CD-ROMs/ memory sticks in the school is subject to non-violation of the software’s licence agreement and adheres to points 5 and 9 above.
- The use of apps and Ipads with wifi capacity adhere to the same strategies used for the laptops and IWB’s.
Children’s Use of the Internet
- World Wide Web
Children who have access to the internet will do so in adherence to the above strategies.
- Before students are allowed to make use of the school’s internet facility, all parents/guardians will be required to complete a Permission Form (Appendix 1) and return it to the Office. Permission forms will be sent home to families of new students during the September of each year and the school’s database will be updated accordingly.
- Websites that children use in school will be previewed by their teacher before use and subject to the filters operated by the PDST and Schools Broadband programme.
- Teachers and students will be familiar with copyright issues relating to online learning.
- Children will never disclose or publicise personal information.
- From November 2019 Scoil Naomh Fionán will use an online app, Seesaw, to begin the process of creating pupil led formative assessment portfolios. Parents are requested to sign a permission slip (Appendix 2), prior to their child(ren) engaging with this app.
- Internet Chat / Social Networking / Instant Messaging (IM)
- Access to internet chat rooms, social networking sites, and instant messaging services is forbidden and blocked in accordance with the Schools Broadband Internet Policy.
- Children’s use of email is facilitated strictly in an educational context and access to personal email and/or social networking accounts is prohibited.
- Online tasks that involve sending and receiving email (e.g. with partner schools, educational email tasks) will be teacher-led. The class teacher will set up one email address for the class. Only the teacher will know the password to such email accounts. Emails will be opened and read by the teacher before being shared with the class. All emails will be reviewed by the teacher prior to sending.
- When students are writing and sending emails from the class email account, it will be done so under the direct supervision of the
- Children will not send or receive by any means any material that is illegal, obscene, defamatory, or that is intended to annoy or intimidate another person.
- Children will not reveal their own or another person’s personal details, such as home address, telephone numbers or pictures.
- Children will never arrange a meeting with someone they only know through emails or the internet.
- Children will note that sending and receiving email attachments is subject to the permission of their teacher.
- Children will observe good “netiquette” (internet etiquette) at all times and will not undertake any actions that may bring the school into disrepute.
- School Website (www.scoilrennies.com)
- The school website is evolving all the time and is updated regularly by designated staff members.
- Children will be given the opportunity to publish projects, artwork, and school work on the school website, with parental permission (Appendix 1).
- The school website will not publish the names of individuals in a photograph.
- The publication of student work will be coordinated by the teacher.
- Children will continue to own the copyright on any works published.
- The copying of such content is prohibited without express written permission from the relevant child and his/her parent(s)/guardian(s). Upon request, permission for reproduction will only be granted when a Reproduction Permission Letter (Appendix 3) is returned to the relevant class teacher with both the child’s and a parent/guardian’s signatures on it.
- Student Laptops/ iPads
- Currently, there are a number of student laptops/iPads for use within the classroom setting. Each laptop/iPad has been configured for student use. Controls are enabled and student accounts are granted restricted access and control.
- Students will access the same iPad, verified by pupils being assigned to a specific iPad number, at all times.
- Student iPads have Screen Time installed, which provides the ICT Team with weekly reports of student online activity on each iPad. Further, students are denied access to internet browsers such as Google Chrome and Internet Explorer etc. Rather, an age appropriate and internet-safe browser (Kiddle) has been installed as the default student browser on each laptop
- In the event that a web browser is accessed (or granted access), laptops/iPads are configured to block (and subsequently notify the ICT Team) any attempts by users to access content deemed to be inappropriate for our students.
- Personal Devices
- Currently, children using their own technology in school, such as tablet devices, do so with the written approval of the Board of Management, as part of a specific and structured learning programme designed by the school.
- Using a mobile phone or smart watch in class, sending text messages, and the unauthorized taking of images, still or moving, is in direct breach of the Acceptable User Policy and the Mobile Phone Policy.
Understanding Cyber Bullying:
- Cyber bullying is the use of ICT (usually a mobile phone and/or the internet) to abuse another person.
- It can take place anywhere and can involve many people.
- Anybody can be targeted, including pupils, school staff, and members of the wider school community.
- It can include threats, intimidation, harassment, cyber-stalking, vilification, defamation, exclusion, peer rejection, impersonation, and unauthorised publication of private information or images.
- Staff members will use school equipment – iPad or camera to capture and upload images/ recordings. They will not use personal devices for such recording/ uploading. Photos stored on a staff member’s gallery is in breach of GDPR.
- The content uploaded will reflect positively the child’s experiences at school. No instances of misbehaviour shall be captured and uploaded to seesaw or sent via electronic means.
There are many types of cyber-bullying. The more common types are:
- Text messages – can be threatening or cause discomfort. Also included here is ‘Bluejacking’ (the sending of anonymous text messages over short distances using Bluetooth wireless technology)
- Picture/video-clips via mobile phone cameras – images sent to others to make the victim feel threatened or embarrassed.
- Mobile phone calls – silent calls, abusive messages or stealing the victim’s phone and using it to harass others, to make them believe the victim is responsible.
- Emails – threatening or bullying emails, often sent using a pseudonym or somebody else’s name
- Chat room bullying – menacing or upsetting responses to children or young people when they are in a web-based chat room.
- Instant messaging (IM) – unpleasant messages sent while children conduct real-time conversations online using MSM (Microsoft Messenger), Yahoo Chat or similar tools.
- Bullying via websites – use of defamatory blogs (web logs), personal websites, gaming websites, and online personal ‘own web space’ sites such as YouTube, Facebook, Tik Tok, Instagram, Twitter and SnapChat, among others.
Procedures for preventing Cyber Bullying:
- Staff, pupils, parents, and Board of Management (BOM) are made aware of issues surrounding cyber bullying.
- Pupils and parents will be urged to report all incidents of cyber bullying to the school.
- Staff CDP (Continuous Professional Development) will assist in learning about current technologies.
- Pupils will learn about cyber bullying through Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE), Assemblies, Friendship Week activities and other curriculum projects.
- Pupils, parents, and staff will be involved in reviewing and revising this policy as school procedure.
- All reports of cyber-bullying will be noted and investigated, in accordance with the school’s Anti-Bullying, Mobile Phone, Child Protection, and Positive Behaviour Policies, where applicable.
- The school will engage a speaker e.g. Community Guard to facilitate a workshop on Internet Safety for 3rd – 6th classes annually.
- Procedures in the school’s Anti-Bullying and Child Protection policies shall apply.
Incidents of cyberbullying will be addressed in the context of the school’s Anti-Bullying, Mobile Phone, and Code of Behaviour Policies, where applicable.
- Data Protection (Amendment) Act 2003
- Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998 – Interception Act 1993
- Video recordings Act 1988
- The Data protection Act 1988
Misuse of the Internet may result in disciplinary action, including written warnings, withdrawal of access privileges and, in extreme cases, suspension or expulsion. Sanctions issued will be done so in accordance with the school’s Anti-Bullying Policy and Code of Behaviour. The school also reserves the right to report any illegal activities to the appropriate authorities.
Other Relevant Policies
- Child Protection Guidelines – Code of Behaviour
- Mobile Phone Policy – Anti-Bullying Policy – ICT Policy
The following is a selection of websites offering support and advice in the area of Internet Safety:
- NCTE – http://www.ncte.ie/InternetSafety/ ∙
- Webwise – http://www.webwise.ie/
- Make IT Secure – http://makeitsecure.ie
- Safe Internet – http://www.saferinternet.org/ww/en/pub/insafe
Section B – Staff and Visitors
The school’s computer system is provided and managed by the school and is made available to staff to further their professional development and the education of the students in the school. Access to the school’s computer facilities is a privilege and not a right. Any staff member or visitor who abuses this privilege will be immediately excluded from accessing and using the computing facilities. Exclusion from using the school’s computer will prevent the user from recovering files and using the facilities. Users sign and return Scoil Naomh Fionán’s laptop agreement (Appendix 5), and agree to follow this agreement.
The Board of Management of Scoil Naomh Fionán may change this policy to include changes in the law or in the acceptable practice of internet use and reserves the right to make such changes without notice and whenever required. All users are responsible for ensuring that they have read and understood the current policy.
It is a requirement of Scoil Naomh Fionán that all users of its network or facilities accept and adhere to the school’s Acceptable Use Policy. All staff are required to read and sign an AUP User Agreement (Appendix 6), copies of which are kept in staff file.
Compliance with this AUP is a contractual requirement. If one fails to observe the terms of this policy, their access to facilities may be liable to termination or suspension. In the event that access is suspended, Scoil Naomh Fionán may be prepared, at its sole discretion, to restore the account on receipt of a written statement that the user will not commit any further abuse of the service.
The school reserves the right to examine or delete any files that may be held on its computer network, to monitor websites visited and online activity, and to view any email messages passing through or saved on the system.
A Use of Networks and the Internet
- Users must not use the service for the transmission of illegal material. The user agrees to refrain from sending or receiving any materials which may be deemed to be offensive, abusive, indecent, hard-core or paedophile pornography, defamatory, obscene, menacing or otherwise as prohibited by current and future statutes in force. The user agrees to refrain from sending or receiving any material, which may be in breach of copyright (including intellectual property rights), confidence, privacy, or other rights.
- If you are in any doubt as the legality of what you are doing, or propose to do, you should either seek independent legal advice or cease that
- Pupils’ work should never be shared on social networking sites or websites other than scoilrennies.com. Sharing or making references to a student’s work, especially if it could undermine the student, is not accepted.
- Users should be aware that the storage, distribution, or transmission of illegal materials may lead to investigation and possible prosecution by the authorities.
- Users may not gain or attempt to gain unauthorised access to any computer for any purpose. In addition to being in breach of this AUP, such action may lead to criminal prosecution under the Computer Misuse Act.
- Users must not send data via the internet using forged addresses or data which is deliberately designed to adversely affect remote machines (including but not limited to denial of service, ping storm, Trojans, worms, and viruses).
- Users must not participate in the sending of unsolicited commercial or bulk email, commonly referred to as ‘spam’ or ‘UCE’.
- Users are prohibited from running ‘port scanning’ or other software intended to probe, scan, test the vulnerability of or access remote systems or networks except in circumstances where the remote user has given express permission for this to be done.
- Users may not divulge their computer network passwords to third parties and must take all reasonable steps to ensure that such information remains confidential. In the event of the secretary’s absence, only the principal/deputy principal will have access to the office computers for administrative purposes.
- Access to the computer network should only be made using the authorised logon name and password.
- Activity that threatens the integrity of the school’s ICT systems, or activity that attacks or corrupts other systems is forbidden. Such activity includes browsing system files and changing any system settings.
- Personal USB storage devices should be monitored for corruption and used with caution. In the event that a USB storage device is presenting signs of corruption or potential virus activity, it must no longer be used within the school’s computer network. Incidents of this nature should be reported immediately to the principal/deputy principal. Additionally, while the school network is regularly swept for viruses and anti-virus software is used to prevent virus activity, the school accepts no responsibility for damage caused by computer virus on other devices.
- Other users’ files must never be accessed.
- The use of the network to access and/or store inappropriate materials such as pornographic, racist, or offensive material is forbidden.
- In the interest of protecting the network from potential virus activity, the downloading of programs, games, screensavers, and wallpapers from the internet or uploading the same from disc or CD-ROM may only be carried out by staff members. This does not prevent users from using images taken and/or saved by them to set their desktop backgrounds.
- Use of the computing facilities for personal financial gain, gambling, political purposes, or advertising is forbidden.
- Copyright of material must be respected, particularly with regard to the download and use of protected images for further use.
- Posting anonymous messages and forwarding chain letters is forbidden.
- The Aladdin for Schools facility within the school may not be used for inter-staff instant messaging or chat.
- In order to protect the information that is accessible on Aladdin, users must not divulge their login details to third parties. Any concerns or queries must be forwarded and dealt by a member of staff with Administrator rights on the Aladdin system.
- Should a user share their own name, address, credit card or bank details etc. on the internet, it is done so at their own risk and the school accepts no responsibility.
Sending and receiving email involves the same responsibilities and approach as would be used when sending or receiving any other form of communication – written or printed mail, fax, telephone call etc. Most users fully understand what would be considered appropriate and acceptable when communicating with others and apply these considerations to their use of email. There are occasions when some users send mail or engage in online communication that others consider unacceptable – generally regarded as abusive by the online community.
If you find it difficult to determine what might be considered ‘abuse’ with online communication, you should realise that, in general terms, anything that might be unacceptable, and possibly illegal in other forms of communication will be equally unacceptable and possibly illegal online.
Users are responsible for all email sent and for contacts made that may
result in email being received.
- Users must not send any emails that are likely to cause distress or any material which is offensive, indecent, obscene, menacing, or in any way unlawful.
- Users must not use the school network, or Aladdin Schools online software to send messages or emails to any user who does not wish to receive them.
- The school network must not be used to send or distribute unsolicited commercial mail, commonly known as ‘spam’, in bulk or individually.
- Users, as senders of emails, must not use false mail headers or alter the headers of mail messages in such a way as to conceal the identity of the sender.
Scoil Naomh Fionán National School is Wifi-enabled, the purpose of which is primarily to facilitate the scope of usages present in laptops and other mobile devices such as tablets/iPads. Therefore, Wifi is configured on wireless devices that students are permitted to use. To prevent unnecessary consumption of bandwidth, enabling Wifi is limited to wireless school-use devices. Further, given that all wireless devices will connect to the school’s wireless network, they too are subject to the filtering of content that is provided under the Broadband for Schools Programme.
Ratified by Board of Management
Chairperson, Board of Management Date
– Appendix 1- Permission Form
– Appendix 2: Seesaw App Permission form
– Appendix 3: Reproduction Permission Letter
– Appendix 4: AUP User Agreement
– Appendix 5: Laptop Agreement Policy for Staff members
Appendix 1: Permission Form
RE: Internet Permission Form.
As part of the school education programme we offer pupils supervised access to the internet. This allows students to access a large array of online educational resources that we believe can greatly enhance students’ learning experience.
However, access to and use of the internet requires responsibility on the part of the user and the school. These responsibilities are outlined in the schools Acceptable Use Policy (enclosed). It is important that this enclosed document is read carefully. The attached permission form should then be completed and signed by a parent or guardian and returned to the school.
Although the school takes active steps to promote safe use of the internet, it recognises the possibility that students may accidentally or deliberately access inappropriate or objectionable material.
The school respects each family’s right to decide whether or not to allow their children access to the internet as defined by the school’s Acceptable Use Policy.
Please review the school’s Internet Acceptable Use Policy, and sign and return this permission form to the Office.
School Name: Scoil Naomh Fionán na Reanna
As the parent or legal guardian of the above student, I have read the Acceptable Use Policy and grant permission for my son or daughter or the child in my care to access the internet. I understand that internet access is intended for educational purposes. I also understand that every reasonable precaution has been taken by the school to provide for online safety but the school cannot be held responsible if students access unsuitable websites.
I accept the above paragraph □ I do not accept the above paragraph □ (Please tick as appropriate)
In relation to the school website, I accept that, if the school considers it appropriate, my child’s school work may be chosen for inclusion on the website. I understand and accept the terms of the Acceptable Use Policy relating to publishing students’ work on the school website.
I accept the above paragraph □I do not accept the above paragraph □ (Please tick as appropriate)
Appendix 2: Seesaw APP Permission Form
This school year our class will be using Seesaw (http://seesaw.me), a secure online journal where students can document and reflect on what they are learning in class. Your child will be able to add the things we work on (including photos, videos, worksheets, drawings and voice recordings) to their Seesaw journal.
In order for your child to use Seesaw, the app needs your child’s name to be able to associate work like their photos, videos or voice recordings with their account. Seesaw only uses this information to provide the service and doesn’t advertise in Seesaw, create profiles of students, share or sell your child’s personal information or journal content. You can read more about their strong privacy promises here: https://web.seesaw.me/privacy.
Under an EU law called the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), in order for your child to use Seesaw, the school must get your consent. For more information on GDPR, please visit https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/law-topic/data-protection/reform/rights-citizens.
I hope that your child will enjoy using Seesaw to document and share their learning this year. Please sign below and return this permission slip so that your child can use Seesaw.
Please sign below and return the form.
I give consent for my child, listed below, to use Seesaw for class activities.
Student Name: ____________________________
Parent Printed Name: _______________________
Parent Signature: __________________________ Date: _________________
Appendix 3: Reproduction Permission Letter
I ____________________ (Child’s name) and ___________________ (Parent/Guardian’s name) give permission to ______________________________ (Person(s) requesting permission) to reproduce work belonging to __________________________ on the school website (www.scoilrennies.com).
Appendix 4 – AUP User Agreement
As a school user of the network and internet at Scoil Naomh Fionán., I have read and understood the Acceptable User Policy (AUP) for the use of the internet in Scoil Naomh Fionán N.S., and by signing it, I agree to abide by the policy as stated and to accept any sanctions which may be imposed due to misuse of the internet and non-adherence to the AUP.
I agree to follow the school rules on its use. I will use the network in a responsible way and observe all the restrictions explained in the AUP. I agree to report any misuse of the network to the school principal/deputy principal. If I do not follow the rules, I understand that this may result in loss of access to the internet/computer network as well as other disciplinary action.
Appendix 5 – Laptop User Agreement for Staff
Guidelines for Use
- The laptop remains the property of Scoil Naomh Fionán.
- Laptops are to be returned to school at the end of term of employment or if a teacher has availed of career break, secondment, carer’s leave, maternity leave or is on long term sick leave.
- The laptop is covered under school insurance, however, the teacher must take reasonable care to avoid damage or loss. All leads and accessories are to be stored safely.
- Teachers are responsible for updating the laptops on a regular basis and ensuring that anti-virus software is kept up to date.
- The Acceptable Use Policy of Scoil Naomh Fionán shall be followed.
- Laptops are to be used for the preparation of classes, teachers’ administrative business and sourcing appropriate resources. Internet usage must be of an appropriate nature to minimise pupil’s exposure to inappropriate material. Cleaning of browser history should be performed regularly to assist effective running of laptop. Downloads will be cleared on a monthly basis.
- All machines are equipped with CD/DVD drives and a range of software.
This software is educationally based and is supportive of the teaching and
learning within our school. Staff and students are not permitted to install any other application without the permission of the school Principal.
- Clearly identifiable pupil assessment results will not be stored on the laptop. Sensitive data will be encrypted on the laptop.
- The principal shall have access to all areas of all laptops.
- All major laptop faults to be recorded on a Laptop Problem Report Form and reported to the principal.
- The laptop is for the class teacher’s usage and must not be transferred to a third party
- Please make every effort to securely store the laptop and turn off all socket switches at the end of each day.
Laptop Use Agreement
I wish to apply for, and confirm that I am willing to accept responsibility for, taking into my possession a Scoil Naomh Fionán School Laptop for the period,
I confirm that I have read, understood and agree to the attached ‘Terms and Conditions of Use’ and am willing to take responsibility for the laptop subject to these ‘Terms and Conditions of Use’ and such other policies as are determined Scoil Naomh Fionán.
By signing this ‘Laptop Use Agreement Form’, I agree to the terms and conditions of use and accept delivery of the laptop.
Laptop make and Serial Number:
Employee name (please print)
Contact Numbers: Home:
Appendix 6 – Live Communication Agreement
Guidelines for Use and Permission
As part of the schools evolving distance education programme we are in a position to provide opportunities for live communication with Teachers and where suitable, for pupils with SNA access, opportunities to communicate with SNAs.
Given the age of our students, parents/guardians will be required to agree to certain criteria in relation to this communication.
As per all internet use, parents should also monitor, take responsibility for, their child’s engagement with Teachers/SNAs .
Content shared by the teacher and/or SNAs is intended for the pupil only. No content should be shared with others.
No audio or video recording of communication between Teacher/SNA/pupil is permitted under any circumstances.
School rules apply to all communication between Teacher/SNA/pupil..
All child safeguarding concerns will be reported to the DLP as per school policy and should an Teacher/SNA/parent/student have a concern please contact the DLP as soon as possible on email@example.com
Once permission has been accepted by the parent/guardian, the Teacher/SNA will begin communication with the pupil through Seesaw as already occurs between pupil/teacher. All such communication will be transferred by the teacher/SNA to the pupil.
Staff will make the initial contact with you, the parent/guardian, regarding communication.
Face to Face contact:
- In some cases a member of staff may arrange a video/audio call with your child to check in on how they are doing using Zoom/Phone/Whatsapp.
- These calls will always be pre scheduled with the parent/guardian for a mutually agreed time. Calls must be accepted by the parent/guardian and ended by the parent/guardian.
As the parent/guardian of the above pupil, I/We grant permission to the school to set up communication options with our child _________________________ (child’s name).
With reference to communication from SNA’s: I/We understand that this communication is to support your child’s social needs and not for educational purposes, and that communication may be suspended for inappropriate use.
With reference to communication from Teachers: I/We understand that this communication may be to support your child’s social or educational needs and that communication may be suspended for inappropriate use.
I/We are aware of the privacy policies associated with the use of any online communication options and agree to assist in monitoring students’ home use of these options.
Child’s name: _____________________________________
Parents Name- Printed: ______________________________
Parents Signature: ___________________________________
Updated May 2010
Updated March 2018
Updated November 2019
Updated March 2021
Updated April 2023