Students' unsupervised consumption of digital content

Published Date: 04 October 2021 09:00 PM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Desmond Choo, Tampines GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (a) what is the Ministry's approach to working with families on students' unsupervised consumption of digital content; and (b) how can the Ministry help to mitigate against the unintended effects of over-consumption especially amongst younger students.

Response

1. Cyber Wellness has been identified as an area of focus for students, and MOE has enhanced its Character and Citizenship Education (CCE) curriculum to highlight safe and healthy online usage, while using scenario-based learning to help students better understand harmful online influences. That said, it is important that parents work closely with schools to inculcate good online habits and help manage their child's use of devices at home. To support parents to manage their child's online habits, MOE has shared Cyber Wellness resources for parents, through platforms such as the MOE Parent Kit Website and social media pages on Facebook and Instagram.

2. To mitigate against the unintended impact of technology use, Cyber Wellness lessons in CCE nurture students to be safe, respectful and responsible users of cyber space and to be a positive peer influence. Students are also taught to seek help from trusted adults should they or their friends require support or guidance on cyber issues. This includes issues such as cyber bullying, online harassment and online grooming.

3. For secondary students who have been equipped with personal learning devices under the National Digital Literacy Programme, schools can set screen time limits to prevent over-use by students. These limits can be further customised by parents. Such measures are part of schools' efforts to ensure that the use of devices is well-balanced and supports students' holistic learning experiences.

4. Healthy online habits require a whole of society effort to inculcate. Schools collaborate with community partners to emphasize efforts and increase outreach. Organisations like TOUCH Community Services, for example, reach out to parents, to equip and empower them with the necessary digital and parenting skills to support their children in navigating the digital space.

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