Phones away for the day
Phones away for the day
Kia ora whānau, parents and caregivers,
Welcome to 2024, I am looking forward with excitement and hope for a great year ahead with your student. This email contains important information about the implementation of the new government’s ban on cell phone use in schools as published below by the Ministry of Education.
The new regulations require that school must ensure students do not use or access a phone while they are attending school, including lunch time and breaks. This includes students who are on a school course or visit outside the school grounds.
Schools must allow students to use or access a phone when:
- A phone is needed for health reasons (for example, to monitor insulin levels); or
- A phone is needed to help a student with a disability or learning support need (for example, to assist with impaired communication); or
- A teacher requires students to use phones for a specific educational task or purpose (for example, for a class assignment); or
- The Principal decides that they are needed for special circumstances (for example, the student is a teenage parent).
We do not wish our staff to spend their time managing defiance of what is a quite simple requirement that students do not use their cell phones during school hours or during any school related activity.
To avoid this, we will be continuing the process we had in place for phones in the classroom from last year (effective immediately) and have added a very simple process for phones found outside the classroom (from week 3)
Inside the classroom from Monday 29 January
Students need to bring their device to school daily and use it to access all the information that is required for their learning.
If phones are seen in the classroom:
- 1st time: confiscation by teacher for the lesson – on teachers’ desk, can be retrieved at end of lesson.
- 2nd time: confiscation by teacher, phone given to Deans, student can collect at end of day. Home contact. Daily drop-off of phone to Deans for following week.
- 3rd time: confiscation by teacher, phone given to SLT, student can collect at end of day. Daily drop-off to SLT for following week. Student and parent meeting with principal.
Outside the classroom from Monday 12 February
If phones are seen outside of the classroom they will be confiscated and taken to the school office.
- 1st time: Can be retrieved from the office at the end of the day.
- 2nd time: Can be retrieved from the office at the end of the day. Home contact. Daily drop-off of phone to Deans for following week.
- 3rd time: Can be retrieved from the office at the end of the day. Daily drop-off of phone to SLT for following week. Student and parent meeting with principal.
Students should not use their cell phones or have them out of their bags or pockets while at school or during school activities during school hours. (We are very used to the “oh I wasn’t using it….it was just in my hand” defence.) They will be reminded of this frequently.
If a student simply refuses to hand their phone to a staff member the issue will be one of defiance and will be treated as such by our senior leadership team.
To allow this message to be conveyed to all students and whānau we will be repeating it at every possible opportunity in week 1 and week 2. Whilst we do not expect to see phones at any time during this “grace period”, implementation of the 3-step process outside of the classroom will start from week 3, Monday 12 February. Phones can not been seen in class from Monday 29 January.
If you need to contact your student urgently during the day, please contact the school office 04-566-1089. There is also a phone available for your student to use at the school office should they need to contact you.
If you feel that your student does require use of their cell phone during the day because of a medical or ‘learning support’ need please communicate that to one of our Deputy Principals.
Yr 13 and 11 Mrs Maria Kerr [email protected]
Yr 12 and 9 Ms Sinapi Taeao [email protected]
Yr 10 Mrs Ngaira Sewell [email protected]
The Ministry of Education advise us that an example of a medical requirement might be if a student is diabetic and uses a phone to track their blood sugars. An example of a 'learning support' need would be a student who does not speak English and uses a translator app on their phone.
Thank you for your support of us as we meet the governments requirements.
He waka eke noa – we are all in this together.
Ngā mihi nui