Acceptable Use Policy

The aim of this Acceptable Use Policy is to ensure that pupils will benefit from learning opportunities offered by the school’s Internet resources in a safe and effective manner. Internet use and access is considered a school resource and privilege. Therefore, if the school AUP is not adhered to this privilege will be withdrawn and appropriate sanctions – as outlined in the AUP – will be imposed.

This version of the AUP was created by the Principal and Staff of Ballagh NS.

School’s Strategy

The school employs a number of strategies in order to maximise learning opportunities and reduce risks associated with the Internet. These strategies are as follows:


  • Internet sessions will always be supervised by a teacher.
  • Filtering software and/or equivalent systems will be used in order to minimise the risk of exposure to inappropriate material.
  • The school will regularly monitor pupils’ Internet usage.
  • Students and teachers will be made aware of Internet safety issues.
  • Uploading and downloading of non-approved software will not be permitted.
  • Virus protection software will be used and updated on a regular basis.
  • The use of personal floppy disks, memory sticks, CD-ROMs, or other digital storage media in school requires a teacher’s permission.
  • Students will observe good “netiquette i.e. etiquette on the internet” at all times and will not undertake any actions that may bring the school into disrepute.

World Wide Web

  • Students will not intentionally visit Internet sites that contain obscene, illegal, hateful or otherwise objectionable materials.
  • Students will report accidental accessing of inappropriate materials in accordance with school procedures.
  • Students will use the Internet for educational purposes only.
  • Students will not copy information into assignments and fail to acknowledge the source (plagiarism and copyright infringement).
  • Students will never disclose or publicise personal information.
  • Downloading materials or images not relevant to their studies, is in direct breach of the school’s acceptable use policy.
  • Students will be aware that any usage, including distributing or receiving information, school-related or personal, may be monitored for unusual activity, security and/or network management reasons.


  • Students will use approved class email accounts under supervision by or permission from a teacher.
  • Students will not send or receive any material that is illegal, obscene, defamatory or that is intended to annoy or intimidate another person.
  • Students will not reveal their own or other people’s personal details, such as addresses or telephone numbers or pictures.
  • Students will never arrange a face-to-face meeting with someone they only know through emails or the internet.
  • Students will note that sending and receiving email attachments is subject to permission from their teacher.


This is an area of rapidly evolving technologies and uses a wide range of rapidly developing communications technologies which has the potential to enhance both teaching and learning

Communication Technologies

  • Mobile phones may be brought to school                                 Not allowed
  • Use of mobile phones in lessons                                            Not allowed
  • Use of mobile phones in social time (Break and Lunch)              Not allowed
  • Use of mobile phones on school related activities                      Allowed with staff permission
  • Taking photos on personal mobile or personal camera devices   Not allowed
  • Taking photos on school camera or other camera devices          Allowed with staff permission
  • Use of personal email addresses in school or on school network Not allowed
  • Use of school email for personal emails                                  Not allowed
  • Use of chat rooms / facilities                                                Not allowed
  • Use of instant messaging                                                     Not allowed
  • Use of social networking sites                                               Not allowed
  • Use of blogs                                                                      Allowed with staff permission

Inappropriate Activities

User Actions

Users shall not visit Internet sites, make, post, download, upload, data transfer, communicate or pass on material, remarks, proposals or comments that contain or relate to:

  • Child sexual abuse images                                                          Unacceptable and illegal
  • Promotion or conduct of illegal acts, e.g. under child protection         Unacceptable and illegal
  • Obscenity, computer misuse and fraud legislation                            Unacceptable and illegal
  • Racist material                                                                          Unacceptable and illegal
  • Pornography                                                                             Unacceptable
  • Promotion of any kind of discrimination                                         Unacceptable
  • Promotion of racial or religious hatred                                           Unacceptable
  • Threatening behaviour, including promotion of physical violence or mental harm                                                             Unacceptable
  • Any other information which may be offensive to colleagues or breaches the integrity of the ethos of the school or brings the school into disrepute.                                                                   Unacceptable
  • Using school systems to run a private business                       Unacceptable
  • Use systems, applications, websites or other mechanisms that bypass the filtering or other safeguards employed by SWGfL and/or the school.                                                                   Unacceptable
  • Uploading, downloading or transmitting commercial software or any copyrighted materials belonging to third parties, without the necessary licensing permissions.                             Unacceptable
  • Revealing or publicising confidential or proprietary information (e.g. financial/personal information, databases, computer/network access codes and passwords)                    Unacceptable
  • Creating or propagating computer viruses or other harmful files                                                                                                           Unacceptable
  • Carrying out sustained or instantaneous high volume network traffic (downloading/uploading files) that causes network congestion and hinders others in their use of the internet                Unacceptable
  • On-line gaming                                Acceptable at certain times with staff permission
  • On-line gambling                                                                                    Unacceptable
  • On-line shopping / commerce    Acceptable at certain times for nominated users.
  • Use of social networking sites                                                           Unacceptable

School Website

  • Students will be given the opportunity to publish projects, artwork or school work on the World Wide Web in accordance with clear policies and approval processes regarding the content that can be loaded to the school’s website.
  • The website will be regularly checked to ensure that there is no content that comprises the safety of students or staff.
  • Website using facilities such as comments and user-generated content will be checked frequently to ensure that they do not contain personal details.
  • The publication of student work will be co-ordinated by a teacher.
  • The school will endeavour to use digital photographs, audio or video clips focusing on group activities.  Content focusing on individual students will only be published on the school website with parental permission.
  • Personal student information including home address and contact details will be omitted from school web pages.
  • The school website will avoid publishing the first name and last name of individuals in a photograph.
  • The school will ensure that the image files are appropriately named and will not use students’ names in image file names or ALT tags if published on the web.
  • Students will continue to own the copyright on any work published.

Personal Devices

Students using their own technology in school should follow the rules set out in this agreement. They will only use personal hand held/external devices (mobile phones / USB devices, etc) in school if they have permission.

Social Networking Sites

The school does not accept responsibility for inappropriate or abusive material posted on social networking sites that violates the terms and conditions of the site and the school’s AUP.


The school will provide information on the following legislation relating to use of the Internet which teachers, students and parents should familiarise themselves with:

  • Data Protection (Amendment) Act 2003
  • Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998
  • Interception Act 1993
  • Video Recordings Act 1989
  • The Data Protection Act 1988

Support Structures

Internet safety advice is available for parents and pupils at &,


If mobile phones are brought to school without teacher permission, they will be sent to the principal and will be returned when collected by parents/guardians only.  Students, whose behaviour is regularly inappropriate online and which is consistently below the accepted school standard, including misuse of the Internet will result in disciplinary action, including verbal/written warnings, withdrawal of access privileges including activities, trips and events and in extreme cases, suspension or expulsion.  The school also reserves the right to report any illegal activities to the appropriate authorities.

Distance Learning

  • The following platforms approved by the staff and Principal and Board as platforms (Online Learning Platforms) may be used for remote teaching/in class teaching where deemed necessary. This protocol is subject to change as emerging needs evolve.
  • The school has enabled the most up to date security and privacy features which these online platforms provide.
  • Our Code of Behaviour and school rules, Data Protection Policy and our Child Safeguarding Statement as outlined in our organisational policies apply to all remote learning.

Guidelines for remote learning before going online:

We are delighted to welcome you to engage in Remote Learning with your teachers and fellow students. Please remember, that, in keeping with our Code of Behaviour and School Rules, teachers, students and parents/guardians have rights and responsibilities and it is integral to the ethos of the school as a caring community that mutual respect and tolerance should characterise all relationships in our school, at all times. We summarise this as follows: 

·         Respect Yourself

·         Respect Others

·         Respect Your Environment.

This should be kept in mind as you engage with Remote Learning.

We hope to use Seesaw as the main hub for all communications regarding  class arrangements e.g. links to videos, sharing of Powerpoints, assignments, recording of readings etc. Students/ Parents are also expected to monitor their accounts on a daily basis for postings in their digital portfolio.

Guidelines for Remote Learning:

In advance of going online: 

● Make sure your device is fully charged. 

● Find a suitable location – noise free, etc. 

● Log onto the correct link/app. at the time requested by your teacher. 

● Be aware of what others may be able to view or hear around you/in the background. 

● Be ‘class ready’ – have the materials you will need in advance of going online. 

● Practise using an app. before the session, if it is new to you. 

● Above all, be positive and consistent  in your engagement with Ballagh National School Remote Learning. Teachers setting work

 expect it will be engaged with.

While online:

● Remember the Rules of ‘Netiquette’ – please see below.

● Clarify with your teacher the work you have been assigned.

● Clarify the due date for work assignments.

● Write all assigned work into your Student Journal – this will help Parents/Guardians to support you.

● Take notes, as you go, on the important points of the lesson. Writing will help you to understand the material and to stay more engaged in the learning.

● Stay organised.

● Ask your teacher (or SNA) for guidance and suggestions, if you have questions or difficulties.

● If you are still unclear about how to get around an app., let your teacher (or SNA) and your parent/guardian know.


● Teachers will be keeping an Attendance List or monitoring the work completed on our  chosen platforms. The staff will be able to see if pupils are engaging or not from their logins.

● If a teacher has a concern about a student’s repeated lack of attendance or lack of participation, the Principal will be informed and will contact home.

● All work will be reflected in your report cards going forward.


● Our school’s Code of Behaviour, School Rules and our ICT Acceptable Use Policy apply to all Remote Learning. 

● A high sense of respect is expected from students when engaging in Remote Learning. 

● All students participating in online courses are expected to conduct their communications in a respectful manner. 

● The use of proper Internet etiquette is expected at all times. 

● Circulating or publishing (including on the Internet) material recorded without consent with the purpose of humiliating, undermining the reputation of or causing damage to another person, whether considered a “joke” or not, may be considered as a serious breach of discipline.

● Inappropriate language or behaviour will result in disciplinary action. 

● Remember that Remote Learning is not private. Think about the consequences of anything you might write or post online. Do not impersonate others. 

● Do not share the link to a class with anyone else. 

● Do not tamper in any way with any teacher’s online resources. 


• Our school may use Seesaw for assigning tasks and, if necessary, to communicate and receive classroom tasks in class at any time during the academic year or during distance learning in the event that Ballagh N.S. is closed for an unexpected length of time or in a public health emergency. It may be used on a computer (PC) or on a smart device using the Seesaw app. Parental consent will be sought to engage with the platform.

 • Seesaw is a digital portfolio tool which allows pupils to store their work in an online space and gain feedback from their teacher. It can be used on a computer (PC) or tablet or smart device. It enables teachers to set tasks or assignments and include instructions or templates for pupils to use at home.

• Pupils can share their work using photos, videos, drawings, text, PDFs, and links.


  • Pupils may be engaged in the use of the Zoom platform to engage with teachers and other pupils in their class for well-being conversations and possible distance learning in the event that Ballagh N.S. is closed for an unexpected length of time or in a public health emergency.
  • If Teachers are using Zoom, parents or guardians must give consent to allow their child to use the platform.
  • Parental not pupil email addresses will be required to set up/ access Zoom lessons. Zoom meetings will carry an ID and password, as well as using the “waiting room” feature to ensure the security and protection of the pupils and teachers.
  • Zoom Invitations, Meeting IDs and passwords will be shared with parents by school text message or school e-mail and such meeting IDs and passwords must not be shared with a third party. Failure to follow this guideline will result in exclusion from future online Meetings.
  • Teachers will lock the meeting at its beginning to further ensure security and to prevent access by a third party.
  • All online meetings should take place in an open area of the home, students should be suitably dressed and parental supervision is expected. Students should not have access to mobile phones during meetings. Please type first name to be recognised in waiting room when joining.
  • Nobody has permission to take screenshots of faces if videos are on during the call.
  • Teacher may enable the chat feature only for questions, pupils raising hands if they wish to ask a question. The Teacher may request for pupil videos to be switched off for the lesson. Teachers will ask students to mute mics at the beginning of a lesson in order to improve sound quality.  This list is not exhaustive and will vary depending on the tool being used and the age of students.
  • The teacher always invites the students to the call and Teacher acts as host.  If a co-host function is available on the chosen platform, this should be disabled for students.
  • Teachers must turn on necessary security settings before allowing students to join the call e.g. chat feature, waiting room, etc. where applicable
  • Teacher Pre-sets the video meeting to mute participants’ microphone automatically upon entry. Teacher will choose to switch them on selectively to allow student participation. The chat feature can be used by students to ask questions and by teachers to share links with pupils/students.
  • The Teacher is always first in the room deploying waiting room and the last to leave the online meeting. If pupils suspect that a password has been compromised, they must notify their teacher immediately.

Google Classroom

• Our school may use Google Classroom at any time during the academic year or during distance learning in the event that Ballagh N.S. is closed for an unexpected length of time or in a public health emergency. It may be used on a computer (PC) or on a smart device using the Google Classroom app.  Google Classroom is a free collaboration tool for teachers and students. Teachers can create an online classroom, invite students to the class then create and distribute assignments. Within the Google Classroom students and teachers can have conversations about the assignments and teachers can track the student’s progress.

  • If Teachers are using Google Classroom, parents or guardians must give consent to allow their child to use the platform.

• Pupils should keep their passwords and login details secure and never share passwords or login details with others.

Google Meet

If Teachers are using Google Meet, parents or guardians must give consent to allow their child to use the platform.

Google Meet is a video conferencing app that allows users to join pre-scheduled meetings  Pupils may be engaged in the use of the Google Meet platform to engage with teachers and other pupils in their class for well-being conversations and possible distance learning in the event that Ballagh N.S. is closed for an unexpected length of time or in a public health emergency.

• Google Meet will be accessed by pupils through Google Classroom.

• All pupils must protect their login and password information for Google Classroom. If pupils suspect that a password has been compromised, they must notify their teacher immediately. No pupil may share his/her login information with a third party

• All online meetings should take place in an open area of the home and parental supervision is recommended.

• Pupils retain the copyright on material submitted to teachers in the digital portfolio.


  • Classes may have pages on the Padlet platform.
  • Pupils may create “walls” to showcase work they are completing, to collaborate with other classes on different topics, or to brainstorm topics the class are working on.
  • No copyright material will be uploaded onto any of Padlet pages.
  • Additions to any of our school’s Padlet pages may be moderated and require authorisation before appearing on our Padlet pages.


• Our classes may use the educational quiz creator website “Kahoot” as one method of assessment and for enjoyment.

 • The class teacher may create quizzes based on material covered in class. Pupils do not need an account to participate in the quizzes, and all quizzes created will be used solely for school related work.

Educational Apps and websites

Students may access online resources that collect and store data, monitor progress and allow teachers to provide feedback. Such websites and applications may be used at any time during the academic year or during distance learning in the event that Ballagh N.S. is closed for an unexpected length of time or in a public health emergency.