Schools Revise Cell Phone Policy

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greatThe Great Neck Public Schools Board of Education has revised its Policy on Personal Electronic Communication Devices. The policy has been amended to reflect recent State Education Department guidance regarding the prohibition of cellular phones while taking New York State assessments. The policy revision was adopted by the school board at the most recent public action meeting.

In addition, new language has been added to reference the school district’s Policy on Students’ Personal Property. This was added as a reminder that the district does not assume responsibility or liability for the loss of or damage to personal property. This policy was also eventually revised to indicate that the policy applies to the use of personal electronic communication devices and not those that are district owned.

The Policy on Electronic Communication Devices now reads as follows: “The Board of Education acknowledges that cellular phones and other personal electronic communication devices can, when used responsibly, be a positive educational and organization tool, as well as a means to facilitate family communication. Therefore, the occasional use of these devices in a high school class with teacher permission should not be prohibited, but instruction should not rely on personally owned devices.

“However, the use of these personal devices during the school day may interfere with student productivity, be distracting to others, and/or cause disruption to the educational process. To prevent this disruption, the display and/or use by students of cellular phones and other personal electronic communication devices are prohibited during the school day in all elementary and middle schools. The personal use of such devices by any high school student is restricted to times when the student is not in class.

“In emergency situations, teachers or administrators may grant exceptions to this policy.

“Misuse of a personal electronic communication device may result in its confiscation. In those instances a parent/guardian may be required to retrieve it as directed. Violations will be handled in accordance with the school district’s Code of Conduct Policy.

“The school district is not responsible or liable for any personal electronic communication devices.”

The policy revision went into effect immediately.

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