AshColl considering student cellphone use

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Ashburton College is looking closely at student cellphone use at school and is gathering information to see if the current rules need to be changed.

Currently all students are able to bring a cellphone to school and they can use it in class if instructed to do so by the teacher.

There are no cellphone restrictions in school grounds, but cellphones can be confiscated if used inappropriately.

Ashburton College principal Ross Preece said there were advantages and disadvantages to students having cellphone access at school.

Cellphones did not meet the requirements for bring your own devices like chromebooks and laptops and some staff had suggested cellphones were a distraction to learning, he said.

“We have investigated other schools’ approaches and now we are interested in collecting the viewpoints and perspectives of members across our school community.”

Mr Preece said the cellphone at school debate was starting from a blank slate and the views of teachers, parents and pupils would all be considered.

Any changes to the current policy would not come into affect until next year, he said.

Ashburton College recently emailed parents to invite them to share their views via an online survey.

The email contained a number of insights into articles addressing cellphones at school and invited parents to do their own research.

-By Mick Jensen