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Call to give poorer parents greater online training


More work must be put into helping poorer parents with ICT and internet skills, says computer access organisation UK online centres.

The call for action follows the release last week of the Byron report into children's use of new technologies.

The organisation, which runs a network of computer access and support centres across England, contributed information and research to the review. They found that while three quarters of parents from lower socio-economic groups know their children use the internet regularly, half don't have the skills to assist or supervise with surfing.

Managing director, Helen Milner, said: "Being a 21st Century parent increasingly requires new parenting skills. It's not just about looking after your children in the real world - you've got to look after them in the virtual world too. The Byron Review by-passes the emotive elements of internet safety and video game violence to make practical recommendations that put parents at the heart of the debate. By empowering parents with information and skills, families can make the most of the benefits of technology, without falling foul of its pitfalls."

Tanya Byron and Helen Milner will both be speaking at the third national Digital Inclusion Conference, taking place in London on Tuesday 29 April. Other contributors will include Minister for schools Jim Knight MP, Minister for Digital Inclusion Paul Murphy MP, Baroness Andrews OBE from the Department of Communities and Local Government, plus representatives from BT, Microsoft, EICTA and the EU-E Inclusion Directorate.


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