Librarians' unique role teaching skills to stay safe online

On the 11th February 2014, the eleventh annual Safer Internet Day will take place with the theme ‘Let’s create a better internet together’.  

Celebrated globally in over a hundred countries, Safer Internet Day aims to inspire the safe, responsible and creative use of technology.

The Chartered Institute of Library & Information Professionals is supporting Safer Internet Day 2014. CILIP President Barbara Band said: 

“I am pleased that this year’s theme is about creating a more positive online environment. Today’s children are tomorrow’s digital citizens and it is never too early to begin equipping them with the skills they need to make independent judgements about the information they seek out or come across in their daily lives. Many under-fives are now using mobiles and tablets.”

This year’s theme covers the responsibility that everyone has in making the internet a safer and better place. For young people, Safer Internet Day is a chance to celebrate being kind and creative online, while educators, parents and carers can help to empower young people to embrace the positive by equipping them with the digital literacy skills they require for today’s world. 

The internet has become an integral part of our lives; a source of information, a means of communication, a channel for sharing and a source of creativity. However poor information literacy skills in a digital environment will leave children and young people susceptible in adult life to poor decision-making, and vulnerable to identity theft and other cybercrimes, or even radicalisation through hate sites. 

CILIP believes that librarians and information professionals, especially school librarians and children’s specialists in public libraries, have a vital role in teaching children effective and safe use of the internet and pointing them to online resources. They also advise parents, carers and others with responsibilities for children.

CILIP will continue to press for every secondary school to have a professional librarian, and for primary schools to have access to such expertise through local authority school library services or other collaborative arrangements. We also continue to campaign against the loss of skilled staff from public library services.  
Barbara continued:

“Professional librarians have an understanding of information – it is the currency of our profession – and the skills to motivate and teach children how to use, create and manage information in an ethical way. A society that values its children and young people will ensure that they receive the support they need in their development. Librarians will help them be confident and safe internet users.  I say yes to creating a better internet together”

Co-ordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre, Safer Internet Day brings together hundreds of organisations from across the UK in promoting the safe use of technology

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Media contact:

Mark Taylor, Director of External Relations, CILIP
mark.taylor@cilip.org.uk
Tel: 020 7255 0654
Mobile: 07792 635 305

Notes to editors:

1. CILIP: the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals is the leading professional body for librarians, information specialists and knowledge managers. CILIP’s vision is a fair and economically prosperous society underpinned by literacy, access to information and the transfer of knowledge. CILIP is a registered charity, no. 313014. Visit www.cilip.org.uk for more information. 

2. Safer Internet Day (SID) is organised in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre (UKSIC) in February of each year to promote the safe and responsible use of online technology and mobile phones for children and young people. Safer Internet Day 2014 will take place on Tuesday 11th February 2014, with the theme ‘Let’s create a better internet together’. The day offers the opportunity to focus on both the creative things that children and young people are doing online, as well as the role and responsibility that all stakeholders have in helping to create a better internet.  

The UKSIC provides Safer Internet Day specific resources and support for children and young people, parents and carers as well as teachers and school staff and facilitates a wide range of organisations to join together to amplify the safer internet message.  

The UK Safer Internet Centre is a partnership of three leading charitable organisations, Childnet International, the South West Grid for Learning (SWGfL) and the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF). These organisations are committed to working to make a safer and better internet. All partners recognise the unparalleled opportunities the internet offers and actively encourage its positive use for social, leisure, economic and educational advancement. The partners all work towards the Childnet target; to make the internet a great and safe place for children. The UK Safer Internet Centre is online at www.saferinternet.org.uk.

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Submitted by Ed Patrick on Wed, 05/02/2014 - 12:52pm

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