To keep our children safe, social networks have age limits. According to a recent survey by the NSPCC, more than half of the parents surveyed were unaware of such age restrictions. As such, we thought it would be useful to share the age limits with yourselves.
Facebook requires its users to be 13 before they create an account, including registering an account on behalf of someone.
The minimum age of use for WhatsApp was prevoiusly 16 but it has recently been changed to 13.
To have a YouTube account users must be 18, or 13 with parental permission.
To have a Twitter account users must be 13.
To have an Instagram account users must be 13.
At school, our pupils can be subjected to peer pressure to have access to some or all of the above listed networks. We encourage our pupils to be resilient to such pressure, remembering that there are so many more valuable and enjoyable ways to spend time. In discussion with parents, quite often the line used by pupils is, 'everyone else has it'; this, of course, isn't always the case.
We'd also like make parents aware of the dangers of pupils sharing mobile phone numbers to group chats. When shared to a group chat, all members of the group can access the mobile phone number.
We encourage our pupils to:
Zip, Block, Flag
Zip - don't give away personal information online.
Block - block people/strangers who send inappropriate messages.
Flag - tell a trusted adult if anything online makes you feel unhappy.