Agora Portals International School, the first school in Spain to activate ‘En Buenas Redes’, a pioneering project which works on digital wellbeing of the whole educational community.
On the occasion of International Safer Internet Day, the school signed a collaboration agreement with the director of the project, Patricia Bárcena, who also gave a talk to secondary school pupils on “the proper use of social networks”. ‘En Buenas Redes’ helps to work throughout the year on the prevention of the main dangers and opportunities found on Internet.
‘En Buenas Redes’ is a project focused on schools to raise awareness on the proper use of social networks and the Internet. A set of video content explaining the most relevant issues from the point of view of legality, security, psychology and trends in the use of social networks and the Internet aimed at pre-adolescents and adolescents, parents and teachers.
More than 50 videos of between 3 and 12 minutes in which many issues are discussed; such as cyberbullying, viral challenges, digital identity, what to do if you are impersonated on social networks, sharenting or tools that can help teachers prepare their classes, among others. In addition to the videos, there are also summary sheets, an extensive and updated bibliography and a dictionary of “En Buenas Redes” terminology.
The project is carried out by specialised professionals who resolve the main queries and show the novelties of these channels that have transformed our society. The speakers will be: Patricia Bárcena: Specialist in Social Media, Influencer Marketing and Tech Trends; Verónica Pedrón: Jurist and Legaltech lawyer at the firm specialising in Technology Law ‘Terms and Conditions’; Jose Diaz: Specialised in Cybersecurity and technological research and collaborator at INCIBE (Spanish National Cybersecurity Institute) and Fede Leguizamo: Professor and researcher at the Department of Psychology and Member of the Behaviour and Technology Laboratory (BATLAB) at the Universitat de les Illes Balears.
As for some of the main dangers faced by young people online, we learn that due to bullying and more recently cyberbullying, more than 200,000 children and adolescents lose their lives every year, according to a study by the International NGO Bullying Without Borders and the WHO. As for grooming, 23% of minors between 12 and 15 years of age receive sexual solicitation from adults via the internet, according to the study Epidemiology of online sexual solicitation and interaction of minors with adults: A longitudinal study. Or self-harm, which has increased by more than 180% following the pandemic.
However, social networks and the Internet can be very useful and offer great benefits. Generations such as the zetas or alphas no longer make a distinction between online and offline and, furthermore, their good use will be of great value for their future employment, which is why prohibition is not the solution, but rather training and accompaniment.
Agora Portals is characterised by being a pioneer in digital innovation, remembering that it was the driving force behind the GAVEA project (Virtual Classroom Management for Academic Excellence) and that it is constantly adapting to new technological and educational tools. As its director Rafael Barea points out: “technological education implies not only the use and learning of new technologies but also knowing the necessary tools to make good use of them. Our responsibility as a school is to educate responsible adults and, therefore, activating this project is essential for our students and also for our teachers and families”.
As Patricia Bárcena pointed out in the talk given to secondary school students, “Being active users of social networks does not make you an expert in them”.