TikTok, WCape education dept promote online safety
TikTok has partnered with the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) to champion online safety for learners and teachers in the province’s schools.
This comes amid accelerated growth of consumption of online video on popular video-sharing social media platforms like TikTok.
The growth, however, has also given rise to offensive or obscene content, internet hoaxes and fake news, and cyber bullying and offensive name-calling.
To enhance online safety on the video-sharing app, TikTok is training over 350 teachers and curriculum advisors on the safe ways it can be incorporated into learning in Western Cape schools.
Furthermore, teachers can follow the educational hashtag, #LearnOnTikTok, to receive content across various subjects, tips, advice and how-to videos.
Says Fortune Mgwili-Sibanda, TikTok head of public policy in Africa: “Through our collaboration with WCED, we want to highlight the significance of the platform in the education sector and showcase the educational opportunities it offers, while simultaneously presenting it as a safe and positive learning environment for all.”
Ismail Teladia, senior curriculum planner for life orientation at the WCED, adds: “TikTok has become a popular platform among our learners and teachers. This behaviour has warranted special attention from the department, as we want to ensure it is safe and allows them to consume educational content that is beneficial and appropriate for not just our learners but their parents and teachers alike.
“Through this collaboration, we hope to encourage positive behaviour and expose our teachers to the educational value of TikTok, ultimately allowing them to incorporate TikTok as an educational resource.”
The WCED has, over the years, prioritised online safety of learners in its schools.
In 2020,the department partnered with Google to introduce an Online Safety Curriculum Guideline.
The curriculum guideline is an interactive resource that allows teachers and pupils to learn about online safety, said Google at the time, explaining that it would be integrated into the province’s public schools life orientation syllabus for grades eight to 12.