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Last Updated: Tuesday, 7 February 2006, 00:40 GMT
Net safety 'should be compulsory'
Internet safety and how to avoid online paedophiles should be part of the national curriculum, a leading academic has said.

Dr Rachel O'Connell, The director of the Cyberspace Research Unit at the University of Central Lancashire, said it should be compulsory in schools.

"It needs to be embedded throughout the curriculum," she said.

"Teachers [also] need to be up-skilled," she said, explaining many pupils have no lessons in internet use.

She said up to 92% of nine to 19-year-olds now access the internet at school, but a third had received no instructions on doing so.

Safety website

Just over half had seen web pornography but only four out of 10 said they would tell their parents if something on the net made them feel uncomfortable, said Dr O' Connell.

Her call coincided with the launch of a new website offering internet safety tips for parents and children was launched for European Safer Internet Day.

The site brings together content from government, industry, children's welfare organisations and academics for the first time.

Backed by a 1m Home Office awareness campaign, it was being unveiled at a conference in London.




SEE ALSO:
'World needs paedophile database'
16 Jun 05 |  UK Politics
Do violent net porn laws go far enough?
31 Aug 05 |  Have Your Say


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