New Cell Phone Policy

Stephen A. Halsey JHS 157 Cell Phone/Smart Watch Use Policy

The following is an outline of the student cell phone/smart watch use policy created by our School Leadership Team (SLT), which is made up of parents and educators.

Rationale: For parents/guardians of middle school-aged students, cell phones and smart watches can be a very important communication tool, especially when it comes to safety and for knowing their child’s whereabouts. The main purpose of their use in the middle school should be for students to contact their parent/guardian when they get to school in the morning, or for students to contact their parent when they are leaving school for the day. However, as technology and functions have progressed, students have been using their devices in ways that interfere with their learning. Communication with others has distracted them from classroom instruction. Additionally, students have recorded themselves and others, posting these images and videos to social media.

As parents/guardians and educators, we must ensure that the use of these digital devices does not disrupt the educational process/learning environment of a school. Therefore, students must follow the rules below:

  1. Upon entering the school building (except during breakfast and before 8AM) cell phones and smart watches must be silenced or turned off, enclosed, and secured in students’ personal Yondr pouches, which will remain with students throughout the day.
  2. Cell phones and smart watches will remain in Yondr pouches throughout the entire school day, including lunch, physical education, and assembly class, etc. (past behavior indicates that children have a tendency to utilize social media such as Discord, Snapchat, and TikTok, including digitally recording other students if/when phones are out during the school day).
  3. If students are not feeling well, they should notify their teacher. The teacher may send the child to the restroom or to the nurse. The nurse will then contact the parent/guardian to let them know if the child should be picked up from school. Students will not contact parents/guardians directly via their personal devices.
  4. Parents/family members may not call or text their child during the school day. Every minute our children spend learning in the classroom is crucial. Because devices will be secured in Yondr pouches, students will not be able to silence any sounds or tones disrupting the learning process for the entire class. In case of an emergency, parents/guardians may call the school and we will make sure your child receives your message.
  5. The first time a student is seen using an unsecured cell phone or smart watch, found without their personal pouch, or noticed to have a destroyed pouch, the teacher will give the child a warning. The second time will result in a parent notification. The third time the student will receive a detention. Subsequent infractions will result in parents/guardians visiting the school to discuss with the child the importance of the school policy. In every instance, cell phones will need to be secured in a Yondr pouch
  6. Cell phones will be unlocked at the end of the school day.

It is important that we work together to ensure proper use of cell phones in school. Please feel free to contact us should you have any questions.


The School Leadership Team JHS 157