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Fortnite, the latest craze in online gaming, has certainly taken the world by storm. But how many parents are aware of its 12+ age rating?

I always liken these age ratings to that of driving a car and think, ‘How many people would let their child drive a car under the legal age?’

So why should we be concerned with children in our Junior School playing this game? Is it that the thought of children being exposed to such violence can possibly have an effect on their wellbeing? Or is the concern the lengthy periods of time parents are reporting that their children spend playing this game?

I have been surprised by the number of parents telling me that they have noticed changes in their son’s behavior – be it, the desire to jump online and play, to stay online or the responses from their son when they are removed from the game. Some parents are also letting me know about boundaries being blurred, with online interactions having an effect on their son’s relationships. This is where it can become concerning.

This article is not intended for any other reason than to point out the importance for parents to be aware of age restrictions and their purpose. It’s not my place to say what games your sons are or aren’t allowed to play. However, I’m guessing the experts who have rated the game as such, have a good reason to think that it isn’t suitable for children under the age of 12.

Mr David Kolpak
Head of Junior Years – Wellbeing and Administration