The purpose of this policy statement
Shropshire Junior Chess Club works with children and families as part of its activities. The purpose of this policy statement is to:
- ensure consideration of the safety and wellbeing of our club members when adults, young people or children are using the internet, social media or mobile devices
- provide staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to online safety
- ensure that, as an organisation, we operate in line with our values and within the law in terms of how we use online devices.
This policy statement applies to all volunteers, children and young people and anyone involved in Shropshire Junior Chess Club’s activities.
This policy has been drawn up on the basis of legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children in England. Summaries of the key legislation and guidance are available on:
- online abuse learning.nspcc.org.uk/child-abuse-and-neglect/online-abuse
- bullying learning.nspcc.org.uk/child-abuse-and-neglect/bullying
- child protection learning.nspcc.org.uk/child-protection-system
We believe that:
- children and young people should never experience abuse of any kind
- children should be able to use the internet but safeguards need to be in place to ensure they are kept safe at all times.
We recognise that:
- the online world provides everyone with many opportunities; however it can also present risks and challenges
- we have a duty to ensure that all children, young people and adults involved in our organisation are protected from potential harm online
- we have a responsibility to help keep children and young people safe online, whether or not they are using Shropshire Junior Chess Club’s platforms
- all children, regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation, have the right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse
- working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare and in helping young people to be responsible in their approach to online safety.
Keeping children and young people safe online:
- Our lead child protection officer has overall responsibility for online safety and any concerns should be addressed to them
- All volunteers should follow the volunteers behaviour code when carrying out activities online. They will be reminded that they should not communicate with juniors on a one-to-one basis (including online communication) except via their parents.
- We will support and encourage young people to use the internet, social media and mobile phones in a way that keeps them safe and shows respect for others
- We will support and encourage parents and carers to do what they can to keep their children safe online
- We will review and update the security of our information systems regularly
- Personal information about the adults and children who are involved in our organisation will be held securely and shared only as appropriate
- All images of children, young people and families are used only after their written permission has been obtained, and only for the purpose for which consent has been given
- We will support and train our volunteers about online safety
- We will examine and risk assess any social media platforms and new technologies before they are used within the organisation.
We recognise that the club has a responsibility to prevent all forms of bullying (including online). The club will take accusations of bullying outside the club (including online), between children who know each other through the clubs activities, as seriously as accusations of bullying made during club hours.
When responding to an accusation of bullying online the club will follow our anti-bullying procedures.
We recognise that the club has a responsibility to keep children safe both inside and outside club hours (including online).
If anyone approaches the organisation with concerns about a child’s online welfare we will follow our reporting procedures.
The organisation will seek to monitor group chat occurring on our social media pages as far as practicable to identify and take action on safeguarding issues.
The organisation will ensure parents are informed about any online presence the club has so they can take their own steps to safeguard their children from harm.
External Online Platforms
There are many external online platforms including chess.com, lichess and chesskid.com. Whilst we recognise these sites are a valuable resource to improve a child’s chess ability we also recognise our obligation to keep children safe extends to the usage of these sites.
Parents are encourages to set their child’s account on these sites to a child-friendly mode (sometimes called safe mode) and to monitor their child’s use of these sites.
Related policies and procedures
This policy statement should be read alongside our organisational policies and procedures, including:
- Procedures for responding to concerns about a child or young person’s wellbeing
- Code of conduct for volunteers
- Anti-bullying policy and procedures
- Photography and image sharing guidance
We are committed to reviewing our policy and good practice annually.
Date: 1st January 2021