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Tips for parents, carers and students about staying safe online and where to go for more help.


Advice from our students

The winning films made by students for the Online Safety Video competition.


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Stranger Danger Online by Maxwell Silver, winner of the 2015/2016 Online Safety Video competition.


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Made by a Year 7 student in 2014/15 - winner of the Online Safety Video competition.

Online safety at Varndean School

What we do 

The ways in which young people use digital technologies to learn and socialise expands rapidly at this stage of their school life. At Varndean, we recognise the benefits and risks this poses to students in both the physical and the digital world.
Each academic year, we provide the following online safety learning opportunities to foster a culture of responsibility and personal safety in the digital world amongst our students:
  • An introduction to staying safe online for Year 7s in their first half term at Varndean through their Computing lessons
  • Personal and online safety workshops for Year 8 as part of the  High Impact Day programme
  • A four week Learning for Life curriculum in the summer term, focussed on Years 7-10, and which includes topics such as sharing content safely, engaging with others responsibly, digital footprints and personal safety
  • A celebration of Safer Internet Day through our 4 school assemblies 
  • An annual "staying safe online" video competition. Watch the message from last year's winner below.

For students

Stay safe on Twitter: a checklist

Stay safe on Snapchat: a checklist 

Stay safe on Facebook: a checklist 

Stay safe on Instagram: a checklist 

Stay safe on a guide

For parents and carers

As a parent or carer, you want to be aware of the risks to your children in the digital world. Things like cyberbullying, accessing inappropriate content, sexting and grooming all sound scary for a parent or carer. But if you understand them, you’ll be able to talk to your children about them. Education and information really are the solutions - helping your children to be sensible and respectful in their digital lives.
Here are some useful resources to help you do just that:

Advice from internetmatters
Parent/Carer Workshops
In 2016 we worked in partnership with EE to run educational workshops for parents and carers on what these risks are and what you can do to protect your children. Three workshops took place on Safer Internet Day on Tuesday 9th February 2016 with EE presenting and colleagues on hand for Q&A. 
Check out EE's Digital Living space with tips for a happier digital society. 

Safeguarding contacts at our school

Sara Connolly - Designated Safeguarding Lead
or 07809 343617

Kerry Tester - Safeguarding Officer

Lynn Hill - Director of Finance and Operations (in school contact during school holidays)

Shelley Baker - Headteacher
Please contact Headteacher's PA

All contacts listed above can also be contacted via the main switchboard on 01273 561281.

Our safeguarding (child protection) policy at Varndean school can be found on our policies page.


Worried about online safety?

If you need immediate help or have a real emergency, call 999.

Otherwise, has someone or something made you feel uncomfortable or unsafe online?
  • Talk to someone you trust - an adult in your family, your school base, your form tutor or another member of staff
  • Report it to us by e-mail on
  • Report to CEOP who can help and protect you if someone has acted inappropriately online towards you or someone you know. It could be sexual chat, being asked to do something that makes you feel uncomfortable or someone asking to meet up.‚Äč

If you need someone to talk to, you can talk to Childline about any problem you are worried about, for example bullying. They are available 24 hours a day and can talk to you in confidence. The number won’t appear on your phone bill. You can call them for free on 0800 1111 or visit their website.


In February 2016 during the week of Safer Internet Day 2016 we ran a set of workshops for parents, carers and students about staying safe online. You can find out more about these, watch the films and download the presentations from the sessions, as well as a copy of the presentation from the assemblies run for students during the week, via the news item.