School enacts new cellphone policy

Briana Munoz Diaz, Staff Reporter

What is the high school’s new cell phone policy? It states that you can only use your electronic devices during breaks and lunch, if you are caught using an electronic device during academic time it will get taken away by a school staff member and turned over to the Assistant Principal. 

According to the Student Handbook,Students are allowed to use electronic devices during passing time, break, before and after school, and in the cafeteria during lunch. This does not include the time when a student is on a pass out of the class, as this is academic time. For a first offense, the device will be returned to the student at the end of the school day. For a second offense, parents/caregivers will be notified and will be required to pick up the device in the High School’s Main Office. Following offenses will result in parent pick up as well as disciplinary consequences by the Assistant Principal. If a student refuses to give the electronic device to a teacher it is considered insubordination and will result in consequences outlined in the Code of Conduct.” 

Electronic devices are permitted in class at teacher’s discretion when used as an educational tool. Otherwise, cell phones are placed in pouches once entering a classroom. The school has the right to ban or take a student’s cell phone if it is impacting their ability to attend to the standards of the classroom or interrupts the daily expectations or school routine. The only exception would be a medical exemption with documentation from a medical provider.

As for reaction to the new policy, teachers said it has improved their teaching, as students have seemed very distracted with their devices the last couple of years. Two sophomore students contacted by Spotlight said, “I think it’s a little too much but I am actually fine with it” and “Last year by 5th period my phone would be dead. Now at the end of the day, my phone is still at 100% so I actually kinda like it.”

In terms of the number of cell phones that have been collected, the majority of teachers said they’d either collected one or none. Below are the results of how many Cell phones 15 teachers have collected. Some teachers said when asked how many phones they have taken they said “1, Kids have been pretty good,” Mr. Lemieux said “43 but it is not as many as you would think.” An estimate of how many Phones have been given to the Vice Principal Mr. Lemieux as of October 7 is 54.

At the beginning of the school year Mr. Lemieux gave a 14-day free pass where students could get their phone back at the end of the day without having any strikes or offenses. He did this because he didn’t know how students were going to react the first 2 weeks, so he gave them a free pass. 54 phones so far  have been collected after a 14-day period with only 2 students with 2 multiple offenses and the rest was their 1st offense. This week October 3 – October 7 only 1 Phone has been collected. The highest number of phones collected in a day was 11 phones. The majority of the phones collected have come from Mr. Baston the permanent building sub. 

In conclusion the phone policy is to have students pay attention and not get distracted from their electronic devices.