We see a fair amount of risky behaviour with our students and increasingly that is taking place online or through text messages. In addition many of the young people that come to us have been victims of bullying and haven’t felt safe at school.
The Everyone Connected grant has enabled us to integrate a program into our curriculum that addresses issues of cyber-safety thoroughly.
We’ve invested in a set of the latest iPads and docking stations to deliver the course, which we’ve called “What’s Your Online Status?” run with the help of the Australian Federal Police and Victoria Police.
Our students will read a book related to cyber-safety which will then be used for their literature program.
Issues of cyber bullying and sexting are the main areas of concern and we’ll help participants develop the confidence to act appropriately.
Our teachers will learn more about online safety so that they have the knowledge to assist students and demonstrate and talk about safe practice with things like security settings on Facebook, which can confuse even the IT confident among us.
After completing the program we hope to see our students emerging with the ability to identify and address common issues, protect their personal information and feel confident in seeking help when faced with inappropriate or unsafe behaviour.
WHAT’S YOUR ONLINE STATUS? PROGRAM SNAPSHOT
The Fresh Program is a community education service for young people (aged 15-20) who have experienced difficulties with mainstream education. It offers them the opportunity to complete senior secondary equivalent qualifications in a flexible and supportive environment. “What’s your online status” will be integrated with the curriculum to thoroughly address cyber-safety issues.
Location: Footscray West, Victoria 3012
Target: 60 young people
Duration: until November 2013
Outcome: young people supported online
More information: www.westernbulldogs.com.au/community/fresh
ABOUT THE EVERYONE CONNECTED GRANTS
In 2012, to celebrate its 10th anniversary, the Telstra Foundation made 100 Everyone Connected grants to community groups to improve digital inclusion by connecting disadvantaged children and young people to the internet, building their online skills and promoting cyber safety.