Published: 00:01, 07 April 2014
Primary school head teachers have written to parents with concerns children are coming to classes frightened after playing “inappropriate” computer games.
Teachers at two Whitstable schools have sent letters home telling parents pupils are playing games with an over-18 rating after talking to children at school.
Popular games such as Grand Theft Auto or Call of Duty often show extreme violence or sexually explicit scenes, causing concern for school chiefs across the UK.
Whitstable Junior School head teacher Gill Moody wrote to parents warning them of the effect the graphic images are having on their children.
In the school’s most recent newsletter, she wrote: “We are becoming increasingly aware that some of our children are playing inappropriate computer games and, as a result, are coming to school frightened by what they are seeing.
“Please do consider the impact 18-rated material has on young children who do not understand the content and cannot cope with the feelings or images they are seeing.”
Speaking to the Gazette, Mrs Moody added: “I think it is a universal problem where parents may think it’s just a gamewithout appreciating the concepts within it.”
At St Mary’s Catholic School, pupils were asked to fill out a questionnaire on internet safety which showed seven children played games with an adult rating.
Deputy head Chris Wright says the results often highlight trends which can be relayed to parents to understand the dangers surrounding online safety.
He said: “The ratings are very clear and parents have to set their own guidance.
“It remains a vast minority but it is increasing.
“Where we feel we can help is raise awareness through the online aspect of playing games.
"We are becoming increasingly aware that some of our children are playing inappropriate computer games and, as a result, are coming to school frightened by what they are seeing" - Gill Moody
“It’s an area where the children know more about it than the adults.
“We hope to provide information for parents to reflect on and make decisions.
Mr Wright says the school will host an internet safety event on Tuesday, April 29, with expert advice on hand to discuss online issues with parents.
The event is open to parents from all schools.
In Feburary, head teacher Morian Morgan made headlines after he revealed children in south Wales as young as six re-enacted brutual and sexually explicit scenes from Grand Theft Auto.
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