Parental Controls on Student Devices: What Parents & Educators Need to Know

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December 19, 2022

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In this resource, parents & educators will learn:

  • How to set up iPhone/Apple smart device settings
  • How to set up Android/Google Family Link parental controls
  • Set up parental controls on Amazon tablets

Login or join membership to read more about the dangers of smart devices for your students safety setting tips.

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Superintendents, Directors and Principals: Request a partnership on this page to unlock our resources for your whole community.

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This is great info, thanks for giving me some ideas on how to start a dialogue with my teen!


Sharon M.

Parent VIP Member

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Josh's presentation about social media was unbelievably fantastic. Our students learned so much about what kids should and shouldn't be doing. The fact that it is such a thoughtful process made it all worthwhile.


Director of College Advising

Educator Webinar Attendee

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This webinar is a very helpful eye-opener on the apps that are popular with my students.


Irene C.

Educator Webinar Attendee

Table of Contents

When getting new devices for your family, there are many options for parental controls to help monitor and set expectations for your family. We recommend starting a Family Media Agreement and finding the right expectations and controls to help your students develop good habits with technology.

This SmartSocial VIP resource will help parents learn:

  1. How to get a free template for Family Media Agreement and how to start a dialogue with your student
  2. Why it's important to set parental controls on your students' devices
  3. Options for device settings on Apple and Android devices

Start with a Family Media Agreement and dialogue

View the SmartSocial Family Media Agreement template to see different options for creating and discussing expectations for any device with your students. Click here to view the full resource

Why it's important to use parental controls

How smartphones can make students feel

  • Stressed
  • Anxious
  • Depressed

There are also many safety concerns, including:

  • Predators
  • Online bullying
  • Dangerous behaviors (for example, viral challenge videos)

Should I also use parental control software?

  • It can be tough for parents to keep up with changes to the social media landscape
  • There are many great educational tools and tracking control software that can help give parents peace of mind, but you still need to monitor activity
  • The SmartSocial team has done the research for you. Find our recommendations in our Parental Control Software & Cell Phone Monitoring Comparison Guide

Apple Screen Time parental control guide

Click here to view the complete guide for Parental Controls on iPhones and other Apple devices

AirDrop, Nearby Share, & Self Share: How to Turn Off Stranger's Access

Click here to learn how to turn off file sharing on an Apple or Android device

Android's Digital Wellbeing guide for parents

Click here to view the full resource for Android Digital Wellbeing: Complete Guide for Parents

Google Family Link parental control guide

Click here to view the full resource for Family Link: Complete Guide for Parents

Click here to view the full resource for Google Play Parental Controls: How to Block Mature Apps & Media

Parental Controls on Amazon tablets

Amazon FreeTime parental controls let you choose what content your child sees, create educational goals, and set time limits by activity.

To get started, tap on the FreeTime app, select the profile for the child you would like to set limits for and choose “Set Daily Goals & Time Limits.” Tap the toggle to enable settings for your child.

Setting up Child Profiles

Child profiles allow each kid in your household to have a customized Amazon Kids+ experience.

What can Kids+ do? (According to Amazon)

  • Establish a bedtime
  • Set time limits
  • Create goals
  • Use Smart Filters

Managing content

Although there are thousands of books, apps, TV shows and movies within Amazon Kids+, each profile is customizable to add or remove content for a hand-crafted experience for each child.

What can be managed:

  • Set language preferences
  • Share titles you've purchased to your child's profile
  • Remove subscription content from your child's profile
  • Fire on the go
  • Amazon Kids web browser

More parental control and student device resources


Device and app settings can never replace good communication between parents and trusted adults. While these recommended settings can help students stay safer online, parents and educators can help students learn the dangers online and how to make good decisions and build positive digital habits.

Listen to Beth & Andrea discuss parental controls and the Family Media Agreement on MomTalk

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