School welcomes mobile phone ban

Tari JeffersManjimup-Bridgetown Times
The State Government is introducing a phone ban in public schools in 2020 in an effort to improve learning environments.
Camera IconThe State Government is introducing a phone ban in public schools in 2020 in an effort to improve learning environments.

Manjimup Senior High School has welcomed the State Government’s announcement of a Statewide phone ban in public schools from 2020.

Principal Kerry Mather said the school already had a mobile phone ban in place for students for many years.

“The policy the State Government is introducing is almost identical to what we have in school,” Ms Mather said.

“It’s the status quo for our school, we’ll just have to make a few tweaks.

“Students understand our policy and are used to it being in place.”

Under the State Government’s policy, mobile phones will be banned during school hours under an “off and away all day” policy.

Exemptions can be made by teachers for education use or medical conditions.

The policy is a result of consultation with schools across the State.

The policy also includes ban restrictions on smart watches, earbuds, tablets and headphones unless the students are under instruction from staff.

Students from kindergarten to Year 6 will not be permitted to have mobile phones in their possession during the school day and Year 7-12 students must have them turned off during school hours.

Premier Mark McGowan said the policy was part of the State Government’s aim to create the best possible learning environment for WA children.

“Our policy will allow students to focus on their school work, without the distraction of a mobile phone,” he said.

“The policy will improve the health and wellbeing of students, by encouraging children to connect socially in class and in the school yard.

“Some schools have already adopted this policy and the results have been very positive.”

State Education Minister Sue Ellery said she was supportive of using technology as a tool for learning and the policy would not limit those opportunities.

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