Second National eSmart Week strikes positive chord with communities across Australia

in Press Releases

Media Release - Friday 9 September

From Karratha in Western Australian and Ipswich in Queensland to West Hoxton in Sydney and Brighton in Melbourne, the second annual National eSmart Week has been a resounding success.

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation initiative – supported by the Telstra Foundation – was run between September 5 and 9 in order to educate and inform Australians on ways to be smarter, safer and more responsible online.  

National eSmart Week, which celebrates online safety through the Foundation’s eSmart Schools, eSmart Libraries and eSmart Digital Licence, received more than 1,130 registrations for the week – double the 558 recorded for last year’s inaugural event.

Presently more than 2,300 schools are registered for eSmart Schools, almost half of Australian public libraries are involved in eSmart Libraries and more than 200,000 students have clicked through the eSmart Digital Licence. The Foundation is working to ensure all schools and libraries are involved in the program.

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation CEO Lesley Podesta said there had been an overwhelmingly positive response from the community during the week, especially on social media with schools and libraries sharing their celebrations using the #esmartweek hashtag.

Ms Podesta said it was great to see social media being used in such a positive way to engage Australians. She said the Alannah & Madeline Foundation’s eSmart staff relished the opportunity to work with libraries, schools and students to implement the framework.

“I am so proud of the schools and libraries that have made this week such a fantastic campaign,” Ms Podesta said. “The growth from last year shows that eSmart is having a real impact and that people of all ages are excited to use technology safely.”

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation General Manager Programs Linda Barry said highlights of the week included City of Karratha Libraries in Western Australia achieving eSmart status and Sydney’s Clancy Catholic College developing content promoting the smart, safe and responsible use of digital technology.

Mrs Barry said Brighton Grammar School in Melbourne has been very active on Twitter promoting its commitment to cyber safety on social media while Ipswich Libraries hosted a cyber safety seminar, promoting eSmart across south-eastern Queensland.

“It really is amazing to see how communities across the country have become involved,” Mrs Barry said. “We hope this encourages more schools and libraries to get involved in eSmart as we work to growing the event even further in 2017.”

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation works alongside the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner, which supported National eSmart Week by promoting activities and running specialised webinars.

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