Resources for secondary school students
The internet has so much to offer and is a very exciting place for today's secondary school students.
They spend hours chatting with friends and family, researching school assignments, playing online games and interacting on social media sites.
While there are so many great things to see and do online, it's important they are a responsible and respected online citizen, just like in the real-world.
What they post online, they post to the world. This is known as their digital footprint. Future partners, employers, workmates and landlords may view what they believe they're just sharing with their friends. Once it's online, it could be there forever!
Enhance your digital identity
To keep their footprint positive, work with your teens and ensure they understand the following steps.
The 7 steps to a positive digital footprint
- Google yourself—Check your name and online usernames to make sure you're happy with what is out there. If you find any negative content, delete it or report to the website where it is hosted. If you find an old social media account, take steps to remove it. If you have lost access to these accounts, contact the social media provider and request it be deleted.
- Privacy overhaul—Stay on top of your privacy settings, social media platforms change these frequently. Set accounts to 'private' or 'friends only' to limit who sees your stuff. The less people who see it, the less chance there is for something to go wrong.
- Un-tag yourself—Have you been tagged in an embarrassing photo or video? Ask the person to delete it. If they won't, report the post and un-tag it yourself. Never share or tag photos and videos of others without their permission.
- Unfriend/unfollow—Have you added a 'random'? If you don't know and trust them in your real world, delete or block them. Don't be fooled by fake profiles or mutual friend suggestions. Unfriend your randoms today!
- Make positive choices—Stay in control of your online world. If you make poor choices while on social media or online games there may be social or legal consequences. Remember, anything can be screen captured. Keep your online interactions positive, useful and true.
- Build your brand—What you say and post could affect your future. Use the power of social media to brand yourself and connect to professional networks. Share your achievements, talents and passions online. Your social media accounts should portray you in a positive way.
- Remember… Treat others the way you would like to be treated. If you or a friend are experiencing a difficult time online, reach out for some offline support.
To further educate students about their online world, the Department has made two online courses are available via Scootle:
- “Enhancing Your Digital Identity” —a course for students in Years 7-10
- “Cybersafety - Making positive online choices” —a course for students in Years 11 and 12
Topics covered include managing their online reputation, cleaning up their digital footprint, the importance of privacy settings, the laws and consequences of the online world, strategies for dealing with inappropriate online behaviour, and how to be a positive digital citizen.