Sat. Jun 22nd, 2024
mobile phone in class

cell phone“At East Otago High School, a new policy has been implemented at the start of the second school term on April 29th: a ban on cellphones for all students and teachers. This ban aligns with the government’s recent directive to prohibit cellphone use in schools, a pledge made by the National Party during the election campaign.

Prime Minister Christopher Luxon marked the occasion with a social media post celebrating “Happy No Phones in School Day,” emphasizing the importance of reducing distractions to enhance learning opportunities for students.

The rationale behind the cellphone ban stems from the National Party’s belief that eliminating cellphone use during school hours will improve academic performance and enable students to better focus on their studies. The party points to declining student achievement over the past few decades and aims to reverse this trend by minimizing unnecessary disruptions in the classroom.

The ban extends beyond the classroom to include all school activities throughout the day, including morning tea and lunch breaks. The intention is to promote healthier social interactions among students and reduce screen time, which many schools and parents have expressed concerns about.

Although schools have the autonomy to enforce the ban in their own way, the Ministry of Education suggests options such as collecting phones at the beginning of class or storing them in lockers or bags.

Despite the ban, provisions are in place for emergencies and special circumstances. Parents can contact their child through the school office if necessary, and exceptions are made for students with health conditions or specific needs.

While some students initially expressed disappointment or found the transition challenging, others have noted positive changes, such as increased focus in class and more meaningful interactions with peers. Overall, the ban aims to create a conducive learning environment and foster student engagement and achievement.”

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