July 2020 “Thank you SO much Leonie. Today’s session was not only informative but it also lifted a lot of weight off my shoulders. It feels like the light has been turned on and I’m no longer navigating this parenting journey in the dark! I now feel confident to address issues of cyber safety and device usage in our home to protect our boys whilst still permitting them access and creativity on the net and in social media. My only regret is that I wish we had engaged you a long time ago!” Candice Mum of 3
January 2020 “Leonie’s expertise and, in particular her honest advice when it comes to online safety, is invaluable.In addition, her in-depth understanding of online gaming uniquely positions her to guide parents and assist them in making informed decisions when it comes to navigating their child’s safety online. A personal consultation with Leonie is an investment in time one is unlikely to regret, and one which I can’t recommend highly enough.” Jenny Mum of 3
“Well done, an Extremely competent professional presentation and well received by our Parent body. The time taken to answer parents questions was very much appreciated. As President of the PRC we thank Leonie for her professionalism, time and genuine passion in the area of Cyber Safety. We are glad that there are people in the community like Leonie who can share her vital and important knowledge in this growing ever changing area. Well done Leonie and we at the PRC wish her all the best for her continuing professional career.”
From May 2017 Parents’ Representative Council – Parramatta Diocese PRC
November 2016 “Thank you so much Leonie. You presented a very shocking and dry subject in an entertaining and very eye opening and empowering way. You had my attention the whole seminar. You took us on a journey of what was happening (like it or not) and then helped us along with what action to take. A blend of being aware as well as parenting skills for the digital age.” Katherine Beaumont Parent
Oct 2015: “Firstly, I was impressed with the level of knowledge that Leonie had around the topic and having been through it with her own children, her practical application to what she was teaching. I walked away feeling happy that my reservations about letting an 11yr old have a social media account were founded and supported and felt I could approach a discussion around those reservations with my daughter in a more educated fashion. Leonie’s takeaway information handbooks were and still are a valuable source of information around protection of information, access to inappropriate sites and generally how to be aware of what is out there in order to protect my family.” Kristy Smith, Parent
November 2015 “The response to Leonie’s talk was outstandingly positive. They felt more equipped to tackle issues, put in place guidelines at home. They felt she spoke at just the right level and they related to her as a parent.We have hosted two of Leonie’s talks now and would not hesitate to host another or to make it an annual event as there is always more to learn”. Chris O’Sullivan Deputy Principal-Pastoral Care (7-12) Covenant Christian School
Video Testimonial from Angela Councel Parent July 2015
Thanks once again for the wonderful talk you did at our school this week. The parents have talked of nothing else in the playground and I think there a re a lot of people who wished they had attended. I’ll definitely be booking you in again next year.
Kind regards, Elaine Mortlake P&C President.
I recently attended your Cyber Safety seminar at Manly Village Public School. I just wanted to write to you to say thank you. I found the evening incredibly informative, practical and so valuable in terms of safeguarding and educating my children about staying safe in this fast moving and ever changing cyber world.
You delivered such an important and positive message with regard to the internet being an exciting and powerful tool when used in an educated and safe manner.
I was able to warn a friend about the dangers of Kik after your talk (I hadn’t even heard of it) and after researching all the Kik information on your website, my friend’s teenage daughter quite happily removed Kik and Ask.fm from her devices.
Thank you for passing on your passion and knowledge, your talk prompted me to chat with friends about how important it is that we are informed and able to keep our kids safe on-line and educated with regard to all things cyber!
I hope you are able to run many more seminars like this and that more and more parents and children learn how to enjoy the internet safely.
Karen Wooldridge Parent
Thank you so much for last night’s presentation. It was overwhelmingly well received by the parents from our school. I will certainly be in touch with regard to running it again next year.
Jennifer McCredie Assistant Principal Manly Village PS
Leonie was professional, personable and very, very knowledgeable. Even if you consider yourself tech-savvy, I guarantee you will learn a few more great tricks from Leonie!
She spoke to the parents about some of the very real dangers of the online world, but her message was a positive one – promoting the key idea that parents need to know, understand and feel comfortable with the technology their children are using. Not only does this help you to keep your kids safe, it also helps you connect with them! I liked that the message was about ongoing open and respectful communication between parents and children about technology use.
I would recommend attending Leonie’s workshops to parents of children aged anywhere from toddler to late teen. She is also a wonderful resource for teachers too!
Natalie Ingram, St John the Apostle, Narraweena
Dear Leonie, Thank you for your presentation to Parramatta Computer Pals for Seniors on Cyber Security. Many of our members are apprehensive about using social media and doing online banking, and you were able to give us a better understanding of the risks and what we can do to manage them. Your book was very popular, an indication of how well-received your talk was. We really appreciate your generosity in giving up your time to talk to us about a subject you’re clearly passionate about. Deborah Martin, President Parramatta Computer Pals for Seniors Inc
Leonie, Thank you so much for your visit and thank you for your follow up information and tips. We will definitely use these! Your presentation was informative, interesting and so beneficial for our students (and teachers!). We appreciate your knowledge on these issues and will no doubt see you again sometime. Pippa Patrick | Junior School teacher, Oxford Falls Grammar School
“Our Year 10 students appreciated Leonie’s well prepared and up to date workshop. The step-by-step approach to Facebook privacy settings was particularly valuable as even if you had the vocabulary to search for approaches to protect your privacy, the students experience was online tutorials did not match Facebook’s current interface – whereas Leonie was across the oat recent changes. Students were able to nominate sites and apps that they use prior to the workshop and Leonie was able to provide guidance for these. We have seen positive action taken by groups of students to online behaviour that required a response following Leonie’s visit this year.” Duncan Gillespie, Director of ICT. The Friends’ School, North Hobart, TAS 7002
‘Since the first Parent Education Session presented by Leonie in 2013, we have noticed that the school is dealing with less incidents of inappropriate behaviour relating to social networking…Leonie’s resources are often referred on to parents to support them in informing themselves of what their child may be exposed to.’ Josie Vescio Principal St Rose Catholic School
“Leonie gave an engaging talk that really informed parents of the dangers of the cyber world for young people, without condemning technology itself. Parents were challenged to think about their role in taking charge of technology in the home. She recognised that parents often feel powerless in the face of ever changing possibilities on the internet. Parents made comments to me that their eyes had been opened, and they felt well equipped to talk to their children. Leonie’s publication reinforces her message.” Chris O’Sullivan Deputy Principal Covenant Christian School
As a parent…
‘The step by step succinct instructions on how to change settings for various websites and devices was invaluable. My son had about 150 apps that didn’t clearly spell out the age restrictions and when I changed the settings on his iPod, he went from 150 to 5!’ Josie Vescio Principal St Rose Catholic School
As a principal….
‘Having Leonie speak to the parents at my school, reinforced how important it was for the parents to be diligent in understanding what their children were accessing, and how this impacted on their child’s social interactions at school’ Josie Vescio Principal St Rose Catholic School
The Cyber Safety Talk held at The Forest High School was well received by both high school parents and primary school parents alike. All present commented on how valuable it was to hear of the latest and most popular cyber sites used by students as young as 7 years old! Many parents were amazed at how easy it was for children to access these sites, many of them being totally inappropriate for young people. Parents were also amazed at how easy it was for ‘undesirable’ people to groom their young children.
The Cyber Safety Talk was able to address the many concerns held by parents and to provide websites and strategies in dealing with the many issues arising from cyber usage of their young children.
Regards Jane Dean Deputy Principal The Forest High School
04/07/2012 Leonie’s focus on the nitty-gritty of the settings in social media was engaging for students and parents as they are in the vanguard of social media use. Leonie’s experiences in working with individuals, families and organisations gave context and motivation to be proactive in configuring the various social media tools, such as Facebook, Skype, Twitter and Tumblr. Following the presentations, students came forward with questions and looking for advice, which is much preferred to waiting for an incident to come to light before the conversations start. Leonie’s book was snapped up by parents eager for guidance, and staff will find it a valuable resource. Duncan Gillespie, Director of ICT. The Friends’ School, North Hobart, TAS 7002
03/05/2012: The Cyber Safety Class I attended with Leonie Smith was extremely enlightening. I thought I was pretty good with protecting my child’s online presence, but Leonie taught me a few easy tips and strategies that will protect my child even further. With online media the way of the future and the interest the kids have in the internet and social media you just can’t afford to be too complacent. Jennifer French
03/06/ 2011: Hi there Leonie, thanks for the talk the other night, really enjoyed it and am making some family changes! @Seana_Smith
03/06/2011: Always open to new suggestions. The internet is growing so quickly. Simply as a parent, I need to keep up. Thanks Renata C
03/06/2011: Leonie This was excellent. Well done! I’m sure there will be a huge demand. Jen B
30/08/2011: Thanks for your great talk on Cyber Safety. I feel more confident now about helping my child use the computer and devices safely without scaring them into the underground. Your booklet was great in setting it all up nicely. Michelle Cabena
Personalised Cyber Safety
Have just paid your invoice. Best money I think we will ever spend.Without your expertise in all of this I think I would have had my 11yr old son off to the psychologist & completely stressed out myself. You have pathed a safe way forward for us, & I feel a lot more in control of what my son is exposed to online” Many thanks A. Finnegan (parent of 11yr old student)