YouTube ban for Edinburgh school pupils over 'concerning material' on their devices

Pupils in Edinburgh have been blocked from accessing YouTube in schools after some were caught viewing inappropriate videos.

Despite being caught with ‘concerning material’ on their devices, a number of children have demanded access is restored, citing YouTube for its role in visual learning and studying.

Edinburgh City Council confirmed it has “temporarily suspended access to YouTube across the education estate while we review permissions to access online services”.

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It added it was working to reinstate access for teachers but did not confirm whether pupils would be allowed back on the site on school devices, which include new iPads rolled out by the local authority last year.

YouTubes . . . pupils who viewed 'concerning material' on the popular site have sparked a schools-wide ban for classmates
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Councillors were told some students had managed to access “concerning sites” with officials saying they had “no choice but to take down Youtube while we investigate”.

Labour councillor Ross McKenzie said the ban was negatively impacting teachers and learners, who rely on YouTube for research, lesson material and studying for exams, with visual learners most affected.

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He added: “If it’s a temporary thing while they get their firewall in order then that’s one thing but the concern for me is that they’re saying ‘we’re doing all we can to re-establish access for teachers’ when they need to make it clear that they’ll be doing what they can to re-establish access for pupils as well.

“YouTube is pretty essential, especially when you’re doing Highers and Advanced Highers; there’s a lot of stuff out there whether it be lectures or documentaries.”

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“I’d be surprised if this decision was taken by anybody who has been educated in the last 20 years or so.”

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