Advice and suggestions for Parents / Carers
All of this advice can apply to any digital device.
ICT Devices provide an environment/tool for learning – that is its main purpose. Students can use their device for other purposes but these must be appropriate to the context – school or home – and subject to permission.
We support parent decisions about the setting of boundaries at home as long as school work can be completed. Parents are able to restrict device functions with parent controls and home wifi settings. However, these controls need to be removed when at school in order for students to complete set tasks by teachers.
Students do not need games and entertainment apps on their devices for school. Whether students are allowed to install games and entertainment apps on their device is a family decision. At the College, students who make inappropriate use of devices at school will be dealt with via the College’s discipline policy. Students may be asked to delete content that is inappropriate for viewing at the College and the device may be confiscated in the interim. At school, devices may also be confiscated for inappropriate behaviour in class.
Tips for Supervision at home
Students don’t need to use the devices all the time at home.
Teenage children need their sleep, so we strongly suggest that the device is NOT TAKEN TO BED. It is best that devices don’t go into their bedrooms.
If you are experiencing problems, we recommend that you specify:
- Where in the house the device can be used.
- Where the device is to be stored when not in use (this can be the location for charging). We recommend that this location is in a visible family space.
Before starting homework / study time, ask your child to:
- Close all unnecessary apps/software
- Close all unnecessary web pages in Safari/Chrome
- Keep an eye on what your child is doing when completing homework.
Using the Device for long periods of time
We strongly recommend that parents supervise the amount of time students are using their device. Suggested homework times are in College Information on Emmlink. Students and parents are advised to check these times. Parents will need to make decisions about the length of time students should use devices after homework tasks are completed.
It is recommended by Occupational Health and safety Guidelines that after 1 hour on an electronic device, students should take a 10-15 minute break.
Eye Strain: Avoid eye fatigue by resting and refocusing your eyes periodically. Look away from the device screen and focus on something in the distance.
Share the Experience
Ask your children to demonstrate the way they use their device at school.
Ask your children to teach you how to use the device.
Have a play with the device and the apps and software.
View Music, Photos, Videos and Apps
Have a look at what your child is viewing, listening to or playing via:
- Music – click on the Music software libraries to view the Music downloaded.
- Photos– click on the Photos gallery to view the photos & videos your child has stored.
Folder Structure & File Storage
- In using ICT devices, students need to develop organisational skills in the digital domain.
- Students are responsible for naming & storing files in appropriate locations on their ICT device or in cloud storage.
- Students need to ensure folder structures are logical & methodical. Subject folders with sub folders are to reflect topics studied. The naming of different types of files are to be meaningful and consistent.
Data Back up
Your Son or daughter is responsible to back up all data on their device. The school will not take any responsibility for loss of data, photos or videos.
Backing up of photos & videos
Photos & videos take up the most space on devices. It is important that when a video project is completed, the video should be removed from the device to free up more space.
End of Day Procedures
IMPORTANT! At the end of the day, laptops must be shut down.
- Why? Viruses and malware circulate the internet every day. Security updates for your computer take place when you shut down. This is very important for the protection of your files and personal information.
- Cyber criminals are always looking for ways to steal your information.
- Make the task of obtaining your information more difficult for criminals by shutting down and updating your computer every day.
The college understands that for many young people the internet & mobile devices are part of their social life. However, like communicating in the real world, there are risks involved online. Parents have an important role to play in educating your child about their online experiences. The following provide some helpful points to remember;
- Young people appear to have good technical knowledge. This does not mean that they understand how to behave appropriately. Teach your child positive online etiquette. Words can hurt whether said to someone’s face or posted online.
- Tell your child to think before they post any content online. Once posted it is difficult to remove.
- Make rules about where electronic devices are to be used in your home. A visible family space is strongly advised.
- Discuss & negotiate the amount of time your child can spend online. A healthy life balance of family discussion, off line time, and sleep (without being wired) is strongly encouraged.
- Keep the communication channels open so that your child can speak to you about anything that may be upsetting them. If disturbing information or content appears in their social networking space make them feel comfortable to come and speak to you.
- Advise your child never to share passwords or personal information online eg Phone numbers, addresses etc.
- Advise your child to always have online profiles on private.
- Friends online are fun but make your child aware that not everyone online is who they say they are. A rule of thumb; if they don’t know the person, they should not accept their friend request.
- Advise your child that their digital reputation stays with them forever. Many employers check online profiles and activity before employing staff. Once content is out there, it is almost impossible to delete.
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(We would like to acknowledge Mackay Christian College Queensland for their permission to reproduce some of their ideas in this section)