BSGC subscribes, through our internet firewall provider (WatchGuard), to a service that categorises websites and apps into a number of types which are then blocked or allowed, based on the website content. For example, two of the listed categories are Education (which is allowed) and Games (which is blocked). All sites within a blocked category are automatically blocked unless the school specifically agrees and allows a particular site. For example, we have found that some educational games websites are categorised as Games (i.e., mathletics.com) and blocked, when they are required for maths reinforcement activities.
The firewall provider continuously updates the sites that are included in each category, as soon as new sites come online. Additionally, access to most social media applications is blocked or restricted by the school firewalls. For example, when connected to the school’s Wi-Fi, WhatsApp can receive text messages but not send/receive videos, photos, audio.
The firewalls generate regular reports of any attempts to access blocked services or sites. The firewalls also have a degree of anti-virus capability and scan attempted downloads. The reports produced are regularly reviewed, and steps taken if it is shown there has been multiple attempts to access blocked sites.
All devices (laptops/tablets/mobiles) connected to the school’s Wi-Fi, automatically have their internet connection monitored and filtered by the school’s firewalls, without the need to instal any specific program or application onto them.
As each Primary year groups use different apps, and new apps are being released all the time, parents will be asked via email or in the ‘meet-the-teacher’ meetings for any additional apps. However, all primary tablets, require the following apps installed:
Many students have multiple devices, not just a laptop or tablet and, whilst we can monitor use and protect the device used when in school, our firewalls and controls do not provide cover when the device is off the school premises. There are several services parents can subscribe to in order to monitor and control their child’s on-line activity. These services, in addition to filtering the sites and services accessed, can monitor screentime and control the times-of-day and days-of-the-week when a device can be used.
The school recommends two monitoring apps for parents to consider, Qustodio (https://www.qustodio.com/es ) and Net Nanny (https://www.netnanny.com ), both of which allow you to protect and monitor all of a child’s devices, and not just the school tablet or laptop, for a single monthly fee. Qustodio benefits from having a presence and website in Spain.
Crta. Tafira a Marzagán s/n.
35017 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
+(34) 928 351 167
C/ Mar de Azor, 3
35100 San Bartolomé de Tirajana
+(34) 928 142 494
The British School of Gran Canaria. Private non-profit school following the UK Curriculum. Providing Education for pupils from 3 to 18. Our school is committed to providing a challenging, fulfilling and encompassing educational experience to all our students,