As devices proliferate across your school, protecting your student's safety is becoming a more-than-full-time job—particularly when they so often use those devices off-site. More alarming still, students are facing a mental health crisis, resulting in more incidents of self-harm and of harm to others. Rates of suicide have been rapidly rising over the past decade with suicide being the leading cause of death for young people, accounting for 14% of deaths in 10-19 year olds. More than a fifth of students report being bullied every year. 

With so many threats on the rise, you need to do everything you can to secure student safety, and that means taking a holistic approach to your school’s student safety software. Rather than treating each threat as a discrete problem to be solved by a single solution, forward-thinking schools are using integrated web filters and online threat detection systems to ensure their students are safe online and offline for comprehensive protection. If you fail to integrate your solutions, you run the risk of blind spots and missing the crucial moments when effective, harm-preventing intervention is possible. 

To help you take a better approach to student safety—an approach that saves you time, keeps students safe, and empowers your school—we’ve prepared this guide of 3 simple steps to take to safeguard your organisation’s wellbeing. 

Step 1: Secure filtering coverage on all devices and operating systems, even off-site

You know you need a filtering solution to become e-safety compliant, but don’t settle for mere compliance: deploy a filter that protects your students without disrupting the learning process. 

When selecting a web filter, you need to make sure your filter protects your students no matter where they use their devices and no matter which operating systems they use. Some filters are only effective on site and on certain operating systems, which leaves students vulnerable to malicious content. 

Further, it’s critical that you pick one that’s easy to customise and will block only the targeted content, not critical learning materials. To get such an empowering solution, make sure yours employs all four key components of accurate consistent protection: a deep database for effective filtering, always-on web crawling, advanced machine learning, and in-house data scientists. 

Step 2: Integrate an early warning system with your filter

An effective content filter is necessary but can’t by itself offer comprehensive protection. So, to keep your students safe, deploy an alert system that detects imminent threats to student safety—and empowers schools to intervene before harm occurs. 

To offer effective protection, you need a comprehensive picture of your students’ online activity—no matter where they go online. That means you need an AI-powered safety alert solution that flags alarming behavior in Google searches, posts on social media, and activity on any device or operating system. Because when it comes to student activity online, what you don’t know really can hurt you and those you care for. 

Better still, choose an alert system that integrates seamlessly with your filtering solution. Because when these solutions work together, they’re more easily managed, and schools gain the context they need with each alert to effectively intervene when appropriate. With these capabilities, schools transform web filtering from compliance to action.

Step 3: Leverage the expertise of safety specialists

AI-powered alert isn’t enough on its own, no matter how good the artificial intelligence. You also need expert safety specialists to review the context of each alert—and, when harm is imminent, to immediately notify school and emergency personnel to ensure students are helped before harm occurs. 

The benefits of expert review accrue to your whole community. Students are more likely to get the help they need before harm occurs, which keeps them safe and brings peace of mind to those who care for them. Thanks to outside review, your IT, student services, or safety team will no longer have to spend so much of its time and limited resources reviewing alert themselves. Instead, they will be freed to focus on other ways of promoting safe and effective education.  

Integrated filtering and alerting: a safer community without wasted time and effort.

See how Lightspeed Filter and Lightspeed Alert work together seamlessly for a comprehensive safety strategy that’s keeping students safe nationwide.

Further Reading

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Reimagine the inspired and interactive classroom for remote, hybrid, and in-person learning. Lightspeed Classroom Management™ gives teachers real-time visibility and control of their students’ digital workspaces and online activity.

  • Ensure all students interact with only the right online curriculum — precisely when they’re supposed to use it.
  • Push out vetted curriculum links to all students at the same time.
  • Block inappropriate or distracting web sites and apps.

Ensure scalable & efficient learning device management. The Lightspeed Mobile Device Management™ system ensures safe and secure management of student learning resources with real-time visibility and reporting essential for effective distance learning.

  • A centralized, cloud-based solution for infinitely scalable device, application, and policy controls
  • Self-Service App Library, where teachers and students
    can access and install approved curriculum and learning tools
  • Remotely deploy, change, and revoke hundreds of policies and educational applications, while reducing typical downtime and costs

Prevent suicides, cyberbullying, and schoolviolence. Lightspeed Alert™ supports district administrators and selected personnel with advanced AI to detect and report potential threats before it’s too late.

  • Human review
  • Real-time alerts that flag signs of a potential threat
  • Intervene quickly before an incident occurs.
  • Activity logs provide visibility into online activity before and after a flagged event

Protect students from harmful online content. Lightspeed Filter™ is the best-in-class solution that acts as a solid barrier to inappropriate or illicit online content to ensure students’ online safety 24/7.

  • Powered by the most comprehensive database in the industry built through 20 years of web indexing and machine learning.
  • Ensure CIPA compliance
  • Block millions of inappropriate, harmful, and unknown sites, images, and video including YouTube
  • Keep parents informed with the Lightspeed Parent Portal™

Gain complete visibility into students’ online learning. Lightspeed Analytics™ gives districts robust data on the effectiveness of any tools they implement so they can take a strategic approach to their technology stack and streamline reporting.

  • Track education technology adoption and usage trends, eliminate redundancy, and drive ROI
  • Monitor app and content consumption to facilitate early adoption and effective utilization
  • Assess risk with visibility into student data privacy and security compliance