Controlling the use of electronic devices during the school day is an issue confronting all school districts in Berks County and elsewhere. The use of cell phones and digital technology among our students is a wonderful thing when used appropriately. However, use of electronic devices during the school day for reasons other than supervised learning activities can cause disruptions in the school environment. Safety concerns are also a consideration.
Student restrictions for the use of these devices are defined in the district policies and in the individual building student handbooks. We ask all parents and guardians for your cooperation and support as we enforce these restrictions.
Below are just a few of the concerns that were taken into consideration when establishing the current restrictions:
- Harassment via phone and text in nearly 90% of incidents leading to fights
- Excessive bullying
- Ability to circumvent the district’s technology security system to access unauthorized web sites
- Note: The district’s security system is mandated by law and costs taxpayers thousands of dollars.
- Theft of electronic devices
- Hindering of emergency communications
- Example: The overwhelming use of cell phones during the Virginia Tech emergency crippled the capabilities of the service providers to handle the volume of calls.
- Distraction to students trying to learn
- Distraction to teachers trying to teach
- Drug dealing on campus